Open Hardware Creative Commons Draft

nebajoth nebajoth at
Fri Jul 16 16:19:57 EDT 2010

   Carlos is making a fairly good point, here, I think.  Open source is
an easier mode to adopt in software, due to the near frictionless way
you can make identical copies of an original.  All you need is a PC, and
possibly the Internet, and you can make bit-for-bit copies of original

The same cannot be said of hardware.  Even with self-bootstrapped 3d
printers like the RepRap, there is a tangible cost to the production of
the RepRap and the subsequent production of every single NanoNote you
make with it.  To share the exact same strengths and characteristics as
open source software, the NanoNote would have to be producible at
effectively zero cost.

In other words, short of some kind of Star Trek breakthrough in the next
decade, we're forced to at least echo the techniques and idiom of
proprietary hardware to some extent.  Bulk purchases of accessory items,
interim deals with proprietary devils (and proprietary not-so-devils
like our friends at Ingenic) while truly open alternatives are created,
and going out and talking to, and wheeling and dealing with, proprietary
incumbents in the industry (thank you, Wolfgang!) are all things we
probably cannot leave behind this year, or next year, or the year after
that.  We can marginalize them, work towards their extinction, but I
question whether we'll ever be able to leave the behind entirely.

On 07/15/2010 09:46 AM, Carlos Camargo wrote:
> I think that in the point 1 there is a missing feature: You can use
> privative (expensive, closed) software for design entry, you can release the
> design files, but you need to pay a big amount of money for the software and
> then you can modify the design files. Is important the use of open software
> tools like kicad, or geda for design entry. if not, only big companies can
> modify the design files.
> Another topic is the hardware cost, you can release a hardware project that
> use 12 layer PCB, restricted ICs (some ICs are sold in big quantities, you
> must sign a NDA, you must pay for use it, etc), complicated and expensive
> mounting techniques. I think that is necessary create a "level of freedom",
> of course if you have money you can reproduce anything, but again, just few
> people can modify and reproduce the design. Imagine this situation in SW, if
> the people need to pay a lot of money for modify a SW project, just few
> people wuld be part of FOSS initiative . The level of freedom is related
> with the hardware cost, and this cost increase with the complexity and with
> the proximity to the silicon, I mean, you can modify one IC, but is very
> expensive, you can modify a laptop main board but is expensive. The
> manufacture cost vary from country to country, so is necessary take account
> of the prices of the manufacturing process in this classification.
> Carlos
> On Wed, Jul 14, 2010 at 10:58 AM, Bas Wijnen <wijnen at> wrote:
>> Hi,
>> Thanks for letting us know!
>> There's just one thing which surprises me:
>>> OSHW Draft Definition 0.3 is based on the Open Source Definition for
>>> Open Source Software and draft OSHW definition 0.2
>> but while I see an almost exact quotation of most parts of the Debian
>> Free Software Guidelines, they are not mentioned.
>> Not that it's a problem, there's no attribution required for them, and I
>> certainly do like them, so it's good to base something on them.  I'm
>> just surprised there's no mention anywhere.
>> Anyway, this is an important step IMO.  I'm happy I don't have to take
>> it, since I don't like reading licenses, let alone write them, but it
>> must be done.
>> Thanks,
>> Bas
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