Wednesday, April 16, 2008

I’d Like the Prime Rib…But Can I Substitute My Baked Potato for a PCB?

I was thinking to myself earlier today about the pros and cons of the emergence of open source hardware. I was trying to pin point the details that would make this hobby attractive or make its development distasteful in the view of a very critical and hard-to-impress global society.

We find ourselves changing interpretations of certain things all the time. Whether it involves defining what is ethical, fun, interesting, or difficult, it seems we all view aspects of life in a different light. For the sake of agreement, and for the sake of coming to a conclusion for once in our lives, I think it is safe to establish a few maxims concerning open source hardware. In order to establish and preserve the sanctity of open source hardware, it is important that we all respect the same underlying principles. In order for a piece of equipment to be considered open source hardware, it must be ready and available to be manipulated by other parties. This type of hardware is so unique because modifications can easily be made to pieces of hardware to either moderately or drastically change the possible functionality of the unit.

With this in mind, these modifications can obviously stir up some crazy new ideas and be a vital proponent to the inspiration of innovation. I hope everyone is looking forward to really finding out what the development of open source hardware can mean for global society. Hopefully, researching this development helps widen the minds of engineers, hobbyists, and even those who are new to the concept of open source hardware. This relatively new revolution is showing the world that it is ok to keep imagining. What will your next invention be?

How do you feel about open source hardware and what are your plans to help shape the open source hardware community?

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