EEVblog Electronics Community Forum

EEVblog => EEVblog Specific => Topic started by: HLA-27b on August 12, 2012, 10:35:29 pm

Title: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: HLA-27b on August 12, 2012, 10:35:29 pm
EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOUaoLjrNPo#ws)





Dave I meant to say this for long time but didn't for some reason which I can't remember now, anyway...

I think it would be very nice if you had a dedicated section for OSHW on the forum. Currently you have the Open Source KiCad / gEDA thing but anything posted there which is not about KiCad / gEDA seems out of topic. So a dedicated forum section where OHSW could be discussed as a concept would perhaps spur some more discussion and maybe even new users.


As for the unwritten rules, I agree with them, including the fact that they are unwritten and unenforceable and also the fact that the Chinese think that this is one front where they can crush and destroy the western imperialism without having to do any actual math  ;)

edit: added the link to the video
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: Rerouter on August 12, 2012, 10:58:45 pm
i thank you for clearing that up dave :)

also i see another of those power supplies, your controlled load and a ucurrent and a bunch of soldering stuff behind you... i wonder ... :)
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: jucole on August 13, 2012, 08:13:24 pm
I think it would be very nice if you had a dedicated section for OSHW on the forum.
I agree.


I think if you release as OSHW looking for "fortune, fame and glory" you have to be prepared for the Dr. René Belloq's of this world !
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: ElektroQuark on August 14, 2012, 12:06:04 am
I think it would be very nice if you had a dedicated section for OSHW on the forum.
I agree.

Me too.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: mjrossiter on August 14, 2012, 12:25:08 am
I want to use the example posted to the EEVblog site to disagree with Dave a little on point 1:

Quote
Go see the TangiBot that looks like an exact clone of the Makerbot Replicator now on Kickstarter for $700 less per unit than the original Makerbot. Looks like TangiBot breaks ALL your OSHW rules.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2117793364/the-tangibot-3d-printer-the-affordable-makerbot-re (http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2117793364/the-tangibot-3d-printer-the-affordable-makerbot-re)

Personally, I would have not duplicated the Makerbot Replicator (Rule #1), there are so many things wrong with it IMO. But maybe TangiBot is trying to make a point – that the Makerbot Replicator is hugely over priced(?)

Despite Dave's protestations to the contrary, finding less expensive, more efficient methods to produce something is innovation.  The good folks at MakerBot have created a wonderful product and support an enthusiastic community, both of which are laudable.  However, they have, for whatever reason, elected to manufacture their product using very inefficient mechanisms, which results in a higher cost to the customer. 

Although the Cupcake, Thing-O-Matic, and Replicator built off of the work of the RepRap community, there is no doubt that the ability of these machines to replicate themselves wasn't much of a design constraint.  It seems that MakerBot has been more focused on the idea of democratizing manufacturing, which one would think would lend itself toward the development of less expensive machines.  MakerBot has been moving toward more expensive machines with more bells and whistles, while apparently constraining itself to inefficient and expensive manufacturing techniques.  Producing ever more expensive products isn't going help achieve their goal.

Back to my original point though: there are a lot of mechanisms to turn ideas into physical objects.  Some plastic shapes require complicated molds for injection molding, and need huge volumes to justify the cost of the mold.  Other shapes are easy to cast, and don't make sense to print.  Finding the right combination of product design, manufacturing process, and supply chain are inter-related, and all of them contribute to the success of the product.  Innovation is required across the board.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: olsenn on August 14, 2012, 12:31:16 am
There ARE NO RULES to open source (hardware or software)! That is the whole point.

Open source is about publishing your work openly and freely to anyone and everyone who wants it. Anyone can do anything with it, with no restrictions, and all for free. The resultant product doesn't also have to be open source (although obviosuly the author cannot pattend the portion of the product that has already been released as open source), no credit needs to be given to the author (although it would be kind to do so), and certainly no money needs to be given to the author!
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: hans on August 14, 2012, 12:36:29 am
Ah well, Dave uCurrent is being 'resold' for cheap at some dutch 'bulk buy' community site. Like where an organiser says he can offer xx price if he has more than 50 orders, so he gets quantity discount and can offer that to every buyer.

http://translate.google.nl/translate?hl=nl&sl=nl&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsamenkopen.net%2Faction%2F586019 (http://translate.google.nl/translate?hl=nl&sl=nl&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsamenkopen.net%2Faction%2F586019)
http://translate.google.nl/translate?sl=nl&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=nl&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsamenkopen.net%2Faction_products%2F586019&act=url (http://translate.google.nl/translate?sl=nl&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=nl&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsamenkopen.net%2Faction_products%2F586019&act=url)

So yeah, I don't know whether they have had contact with Dave, but I guess that's even worse than the makerbot. Because, 20 euro's , that's like 25$. Nothing is changed to the design , or contributed. Quite sad, really. But as Dave pointed out, the commercial license allows this (I guess?).
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: chrome on August 14, 2012, 12:53:43 am
Ah well, Dave uCurrent is being 'resold' for cheap at some dutch 'bulk buy' community site. Like where an organiser says he can offer xx price if he has more than 50 orders, so he gets quantity discount.

http://translate.google.nl/translate?sl=nl&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=nl&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsamenkopen.net%2Faction_products%2F586019&act=url (http://translate.google.nl/translate?sl=nl&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=nl&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsamenkopen.net%2Faction_products%2F586019&act=url)
http://translate.google.nl/translate?sl=nl&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=nl&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsamenkopen.net%2Faction_products%2F586019&act=url (http://translate.google.nl/translate?sl=nl&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=nl&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fsamenkopen.net%2Faction_products%2F586019&act=url)

So yeah, I don't know whether they have had contact with Dave, but I guess that's even worse than the makerbot. Because, 20 euro's , that's like 25$. Nothing is changed to the design , or contributed. Quite sad, really. But as Dave pointed out, the commercial license allows this (I guess?).

I've ordered one from him, it's half the price it would have cost if I bought it from Dave himself.
Besides, he doesn't sell in Europe anyway.

And the did change some stuff.

Besides the entire rule of not undercutting the originator is a dumb rule, if say for example I devise an open-source device that can laser an image on a PCB (so you don't have to print on clear film and then expose it) and say that cost 100$ to build, but then I sell it for 500$, why shouldn't someone else then make it cheaper and more available to others?
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: hans on August 14, 2012, 01:15:51 am
The only thing I read about changes is form factor so it fits in the 4 euro Hammond case from Conrad :)

I don't agree the undercutting 'rule' is dumb. It's loyal to the original designer. They put effort and time in it.

What if you would have organised and designed a project the size of the Makerbot. Of course you get community design contributions, but these contributions need to be verified and checked too. It eats a lot of time. So when you finally get around to start a production and make some money ('time') of it, someone else comes along and puts you offside with his own production version. It doesn't motivate people to OSHW if they know someone else is going to produce an exact replica for a much lower price. You could just leave it closed source or do contract work in the same time.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: KedasProbe on August 14, 2012, 02:38:54 am
About µCurrent http://samenkopen.net/action_product/586019/859471 (http://samenkopen.net/action_product/586019/859471)
Delivers in Europe and YOU have to solder and test it, you get the components in a bag but this does not include the housing and battery.
So it's obvious that the price is different and probably also the people who are willing to buy it this way.


Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: chrome on August 14, 2012, 02:44:57 am
About µCurrent http://samenkopen.net/action_product/586019/859471 (http://samenkopen.net/action_product/586019/859471)
Delivers in Europe and YOU have to solder and test it, you get the components in a bag but this does not include the housing and battery.
So it's obvious that the price is different and probably also the people who are willing to buy it this way.

You can get a soldered version for a few bucks more
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: Monkeh on August 14, 2012, 02:53:45 am
There ARE NO RULES to open source (hardware or software)! That is the whole point.

Open source is about publishing your work openly and freely to anyone and everyone who wants it. Anyone can do anything with it, with no restrictions, and all for free. The resultant product doesn't also have to be open source (although obviosuly the author cannot pattend the portion of the product that has already been released as open source), no credit needs to be given to the author (although it would be kind to do so), and certainly no money needs to be given to the author!

I think you'll find many of the common open source (hardware or software) licenses disagree with you on most of these points.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: KedasProbe on August 14, 2012, 02:55:13 am
You can get a soldered version for a few bucks more
Ah I see http://samenkopen.net/action_products/586019/392690 (http://samenkopen.net/action_products/586019/392690) but they are both sold out.
Anyway, if you don't offer your product to this market I don't think Dave can complain, it seems logical that someone will fill this void and if that person would ask too much you would complain that he/she is doing it for profit.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: chrome on August 14, 2012, 03:00:06 am
Besides, the guy is hardly making a profit, he's losing money really.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: T4P on August 14, 2012, 04:02:25 am
Besides, the guy is hardly making a profit, he's losing money really.

Indeed.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: gregariz on August 14, 2012, 08:15:01 am
I think this issue highlights some differences in mindset. If I look at the tangibot man, the guy is an MBA so to understand that mindset you need to think in those terms - he fundamentally may think that you don't need to build a better mousetrap - its all about price at this point - and he may be right. His innovation is price and in his world that's as important as anything technical. I think some of the magazine and OSHW guys may be a little unrealistic.

The other mindset issue about OSHW and magazines for that matter has to do with technical innovation. I'm not sure I believe I've ever seen anything particularly innovative in technical terms in the OSHA or magazine community. Usually its a price innovation against a competing commercial product that usually does more. Mostly its about figuring out how they can build something like a commercial product in their garage. Ie a free compiler, a lower cost development kit, a free bit of cad software, a bit of test kit, a kit 3D printer, CNC machine or the like.

None of these are original or new and indeed many try and do copy the commercial guys as closely as possible. They are usually doing the project because they can't afford to by an Agilent or a HAAS or similar. We see the Chinese picking up almost all of these projects and copying them and sticking them on ebay - because the way they've been making money is also by doing the same think - figuring out how to build a cheaper <insert name brand>. I'd expect this to be the direction. I don't think there's much people like makerbot can do to innovate at this point - its all been done before they even arrived. You want to know what makerbot can do to innovate? Look at uPrint, they did it years ago and it will cost you 15K. Want to know what the cheap laser guys can do to come up with a better laser? Look at Epilog. They already did it and it will cost you 10K. Want to know what a better test instrument looks like? - look at the test companies - they know everything there is to know - and they will charge you for it. Thats not to say some innovation can't be done (indeed at the cutting edge we often see uni researchers working) and there isnt something the commercial guys have forgotten but I suspect anyone who thinkss magazine projects or OSHA projects are the innovation drivers is a little dillusional.

In the heyday of magazines it used to be that if the magazine project could present something that you could build instead of spending a fortune on a high end instrument they did well. Things like EA's playmaster amps spring to mind. But I personally don't think much innovation was theirs other than in price.



 
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: EEVblog on August 14, 2012, 10:07:51 am
There ARE NO RULES to open source (hardware or software)! That is the whole point.

Open source is about publishing your work openly and freely to anyone and everyone who wants it. Anyone can do anything with it, with no restrictions, and all for free. The resultant product doesn't also have to be open source (although obviosuly the author cannot pattend the portion of the product that has already been released as open source), no credit needs to be given to the author (although it would be kind to do so), and certainly no money needs to be given to the author!

I think you'll find many of the common open source (hardware or software) licenses disagree with you on most of these points.


Yes indeed.
Most people use a license that legally requires attribution and the re-release of the modified product under the same license.

Dave.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: gxti on August 14, 2012, 03:00:52 pm
Copyright and licensing in hardware applies only to the source documents: schematics, firmware, even gerbers. But not the configuration of parts itself, nor the concept. Copyright doesn't protect a device from being reverse-engineered or even just transcribed from an original schematic. Patents do, but the vast majority of project owners aren't in control of any patents, although a few will certainly be violating other people's patents unintentionally.

But yes, it's misleading to say there are "no rules" whatsoever. If you use original source documents, or build upon them, then you have to comply with the author's license. OSHW licenses generally require attribution and maybe release of modified documents under the same license, but not royalties nor prohibition of commercial sale. Shameless advertisement of your product as "a clone of that other product" technically qualifies as attribution, but is definitely poor form. Just re-framing it as an evolutionary improvement instead of "same product for less monies!" would make the whole affair a lot less objectionable.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: joseph.anand on August 14, 2012, 03:08:58 pm
A number of people here and on the Tangibot comment section seemed to have missed the point Dave was trying to make. There are unwritten rules of OSHW just like there are unwritten rules that say "If you find a purse with loads of cash and the person's identification on it you should return it back". These rules are not legal but moral. I do agree that the Makerbot Replicator is expensive but duplicating it with the only noteworthy difference being the price  is not ethical. I am pretty sure the same would have been the case if Makerbot had just ripped of the RepRap designs. I know it hasn't because I have followed their designs in detail. As anyone who has designed a product knows, the initial development will be expensive and may require many iterations before things work out to his/her satisfaction. In addition a private or a limited liability company will have operational costs that will not apply to an individual or a proprietorship firm. These and other costs related to future R&D will have to be factored in when pricing a product. 

Pricing something lower than the competition is not innovation. At the most it can be called "Chinnovation" that the Chinese have perfected thanks to their low labour costs, lax labour rules and govt. concessions to industries. Opensource is not about money, it is about people contributing through innovation. The only way the open source community grows is when people contribute by innovating.

Opensource Hardware and Software come with a license and are not the same as public domain hardware and software. The irony is that inspite of being around for so many years, people still fail to understand the philosophy of Opensource.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: Mechatrommer on August 14, 2012, 09:23:08 pm
There are unwritten rules of OSHW just like there are unwritten rules that say "If you find a purse with loads of cash and the person's identification on it you should return it back". These rules are not legal but moral.
what if the original maker charges for "unjustifyably" high price? and another cloner charges for resonable price, is that immoral? "rules" or "laws" are "enforced" one. moral is "laws" that is not enforced. people go to jail by "enforcement". imagine how many "unreportable" "immoral" activities out there? and... even "laws" are changing by time. so whats immoral today maybe a moral in the future. we can only talk, talk and talk filling up spaces in the net ;) YMMV
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: EEVblog on August 14, 2012, 11:38:08 pm
A number of people here and on the Tangibot comment section seemed to have missed the point Dave was trying to make. There are unwritten rules of OSHW just like there are unwritten rules that say "If you find a purse with loads of cash and the person's identification on it you should return it back". These rules are not legal but moral.

and importantly, not required to be followed by anyone. Some people do not agree with me, and that's fine and fully expected. But they also miss the point that I was simply stating what the general consensus of the industry is (and has been for a long time before OSHW came along). And in stating that I don't think I'm wrong, because that has been my experience over a long time. And if they speak to others in the game, they will say similar things I'm sure.

Some people have also got the impression that I do not like anyone who does not follow these "unwritten rules", and that is simply not the case. I actually support the Tangibot guy in what he is doing. I just think he could and should have done it slightly differently.

The "rules" are not meant to be rules that you must follow, they are rules that if you do follow them, you won't get anyone's nose out of joint or get a not-so-good rep in the community. If you don't care about that stuff, then great, the rules are not meant for you!

Dave.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: EEVblog on August 14, 2012, 11:46:21 pm
There are unwritten rules of OSHW just like there are unwritten rules that say "If you find a purse with loads of cash and the person's identification on it you should return it back". These rules are not legal but moral.
what if the original maker charges for "unjustifyably" high price?

Then that person will not survive in the market, even if they are the originator.
For me, the rules hold regardless. If someone who designed WidgetX sells it at some ridiculous figure that no one buys it at, that doesn't alter the rules.  I personally would still respect that they are the original designer, and are still selling the product (even if no one is buying it), and I would not clone it out of respect for the original designer. If I wanted to sell it then I would improve or change it in some way and sell my own version.
There is almost never a reason to clone something 100%, unless you are just in it to make money fast with absolute minimal effort. 100% cloning is just lame.

Dave.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: danielpublic on August 15, 2012, 01:09:54 am
Yes, these rules/ethos certainly goes way back. At least to, and probably before the seventies when Stallman (https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/stallman-kth.html), as the Free ninja he would become/is, crawled both high and low to get access to a terminal and down that road.. well here we are.

Totally agree regarding the CC-BY-NC, it simply doesn't work. Two examples:
Arcol.hu Hot-End Version 3.0 (http://reprap.org/wiki/Arcol.hu_Hot-End_Version_3.0) (CC-BY-NC (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/)) -> Budaschnozzle (http://reprap.org/wiki/LulzBot/Budaschnozzle) (GPL (https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.html)).
Gen7 Board v.1.2 (http://reprap.org/wiki/Gen7_Board_1.2) (GPL (https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/free-sw.html)) -> Gen7 Board v.1.3.1 (http://reprap.org/wiki/Gen7_Board_1.3.1) (CC-BY-NC (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/)).
This change was apparently brought forth since someone started to sell these pcb & kits on ebay. The main developer Traumflug (http://reprap.org/wiki/User:Traumflug) of said electronics have made a separate section (http://reprap.org/wiki/User:Traumflug#My_Take_on_Non-Commercial_Licences) on his userpage. The only change I know of is that the Streisand effect (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streisand_effect) has come into play and the eBay seller is getting even more publicity.

It would be really Nice with a subforum for OSHW!
As it happens I came here today to tip about a competition over at the RepRap wiki around creating a lowcost DIY electronics; "Race to the Bottom (http://reprap.org/wiki/Race_to_the_Bottom)".

Please, have at it! :)
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: dankers on August 15, 2012, 01:48:40 am
Dave, you are awesome, you make some great videos and are one of the top guys around however, I am sorry to really disagree with you on some of this, please hear me out, it's something I have put a lot of time and thought in to and I have walked the walk.  I noticed on youtube channel you replied to people that disagreed with stance with comments like "where is your open hardware", this is why I posted here. I have quite a lot of it and currently I run an Australian based project called OpenPilot. It's not some dev tools or anything like that,  it's a fully finished product in a market that is extremely popular, many of our original ideas and hardware innovations have been adopted by others, often without any credit unfortunately.   

What your video states is you want the NC license's protection but not to actually use it. I've seen that before and just like them you try to tack on amendments to the end of the CC-BY-SA for what you want it to be, however, that is not really how it works. Your argument against the NC does not seem valid at all; that people would sue each other? Not at all, using the NC simply states "I don't to be free corporate welfare for someone else". I have however seen projects using the CC-BY-SA threaten to sue people and file take down requests for legal hardware, yes really.

Sorry, there are no unwritten rules, that is why they are unwritten, what you state as your opinion and what you would like is not what I would like, that is why we pick a particular license; that covers our terms and what we want without any other rules being added. I have made some CC-BY-SA hardware and I want people to clone it. I used that license specifically for that purpose despite some of it costing a load of money to make. We have a project in the works that has so far cost $5000, this will also be CC-BY-SA as we want clones of it and is a huge gift to the whole community at large, we are doing this as it is something badly needed.

I have also made hardware using the NC license, the core of OpenPilot's hardware uses the NC, I want it to be open so people can look and learn from it, make their own versions non-commercially which many have done but simply I do not want commercial works or clones based off it as it would hurt the project I am involved in. In fact in my experience, this creates a great balance, people can tinker but also can't reat you as a sucker. I want that strictly to stay as a hobby only, as soon as money making gets involved things can and do turn ugly, seen it in the past.  Additionally, OpenPilot is a non-profit anyway, we like it that way, we are not about to be someone's free staff, that is not a good feeling and not at all why we do this.

I also use the GPL, there are parts of that I do not like, however it is the closest fit to my needs but most off all I do not try and add bits to the end of it that are simply not there, I have to live with the parts I do not really like; in that case I also get the benefits of other GPL software. I always have the option to change license however, the good outweighs the bad with the GPL. With the CC-BY-SA in some cases the bad strongly outweighs the good, which is why I use the NC in those cases as it's a better fit. What I don't do not is try to add extra parts on to the CC-BY-SA license as that is simply not cricket, how will people actually know what I want? They read the license and stick to it, then all is well.     

If your unwritten rules were followed, I would use the CC-BY-SA in a heartbeat for that NC hardware, but they are not and most importantly that is not what the CC-BY-SA states at all, in fact also here's the OSHW definition:

http://freedomdefined.org/OSHW (http://freedomdefined.org/OSHW)

Quote
Open source hardware is hardware whose design is made publicly available so that anyone can study, modify, distribute, make, and sell the design or hardware based on that design.

Not only does the CC-BY-SA allow it, the people behind Open Source hardware have that as their first sentence in their Statement of Principles, clones are certainly encouraged. How are people to know your unwritten rules apply to your stuff and not to anyone elses that uses Open Hardware and the same license? The license you have selected and the people behind Open Hardware specifically state that it is OK to do what you disagree with. 

Here's something else that is odd about open hardware, it's never actually developed in the open like software except in a few rare cases, the complete development cycle is closed to any community participation, it's only open once it is done and up for sale, in some cases not even that.

Hardware is a different beast to software, trying to make it fit in the same hole like the OSHW guys are trying is not going to work. With Free Software for example there are many cases where you can reuse a library or a whle frame work, I have never done this with hardware, I have my own ideas and I make them. I don't take other people's work and modify it, it just doesn't work that way with hardware at all. On top of that software is never finished, hardware however is; it's prototyped, tested and then released. Why take a working design and "innovate" when you can take a working design and start making money on day 1? After all you have a fully tested and working design.  Sorry but this is just common sense and it seems more what OSHW was designed for as simply most HW guys do their own designs rather than start from someone elses.

There are parts of the NC license I do not like either, it is not a perfect match, however here's the reality: If I spend, time, money and energy creating an idea and making something cool and it just gets cloned and ripped off, I am not going to keep dong that for very long. I could play all kinds of sly games, I've seen other projects do that but I would prefer to stay honest and not use weasel tactics so use the NC. This means everyone wins, we can test our hardware correctly and release just one solid version, I've seen so called Open Hardware projects release version after version after version all to stay ahead of the cloners, who loses? Your customers do and it's unfair.

I also do not have the financial means to benefit from the economies of scale that places like seeedstudio have, if they were legally allowed to clone our hardware, that would really hurt the project as it's not sustainable or we would have to start playing the dirty tricks I've seen elsewhere and hurt the people who actually buy your hardware.

Ultimately we come from the same view points, if there was a license that had your rules as gospel, I would use it, but, the license does not say that and the people behind OSHW do not say that either,  the rules are in the license, don't like it? Use a different one or even write your own.

One thing I really dislike about this OSHW meme that is going around, the false equivalence with Open to mean "let others profit from it", funny how many people don't spot this; if you go and view an open house, it's doesn't mean it's open for you to move in. In software, Open Source covers a wide spectrum of licenses, some people have the source open but with varying restrictions.

From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open-source_license (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open-source_license)

Quote
Some open-source licenses only permit modification of the source code for personal use or only permit non-commercial redistribution

Yet this marketing drive by the OSHW to mean only clone allowable hardware is open is weird unless you look at some of the key people behind it, you would not at all be surprised it's people that have Open Source manufacturing business, how odd.  So I find fairly insidious that they are driving to make open and commercially exploitable synonymous, they are simply not. In software they are not and in the English language they are not.   

I used to be a huge fan of OSHW if it would mean people can learn from things and we all get some benefit like in the old days with the electronics magazines etc,  alas there are more and more people looking to short circuit people's kindness and simply use as a one way system to transfer wealth. It can work for simple products, no question; breakout boards, even Ardunio which a dev board and needs little development but as things scale in complexity and function, the more it seems like a poor idea and all you are being is unpaid staff for someone elses business. There are also a growing bunch so called Open Hardware entrepreneurs, they search the we looking for products that are complete they can just legally make, many of course based in China, I am sure they think it's Christmas come early.

I spoke to one of these guys last year via email, here part of the exchange:

Quote
> but why not make things better, add improvements and have your own version, you know, add some value?

Why would I want to do that! Say I made mistake? Or make things worse, then what! I lose money and time. If I take designs that works then I do not have to do anything but manufacture. No testing of changes or problems to solve, the most changes I make is the silk layer sometimes to change the name! 

   

The OpenPilot project has more open hardware than any other project, we use the NC license and that stops silly games being played so we release gerbers, a complete BOM with Digikey part numbers, all design files, assembly sheets and even 3D renders, we do this for every version of hardware we make. I find it so ironic that many projects with CC-BY-SA licenses do not do that at all, you might get the Eagle files dumped out eventually and only for one version of the hardware but little else.

In the end the OpenPilot community wins real big, we release everything we used to make the boards but the people looking for a free lunch that would harm the project do not get it.   

Anyway, just a long opinion based on what I have seen over a long period of time and some lessons I have had to learn, hope it is helpful.

Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: dankers on August 15, 2012, 02:10:51 am
Then that person will not survive in the market, even if they are the originator.

One of the things with OpenPilot is we sell things for as low as we can get them, I guess we have an advantage here.

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There is almost never a reason to clone something 100%, unless you are just in it to make money fast with absolute minimal effort.

Lucky there is not many of those types around then :)

Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: westfw on August 15, 2012, 09:51:27 am
One of the more ambiguous things that I've seen in the Arduino world is "cloners" whose main claim to fame is "we sell in country X, where buying electronics from overseas is somewhere between 'difficult' and 'prohibitive.'  By manufacturing locally, we sell to a market that would otherwise be all but unreachable."

I can live with those...
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: EEVblog on August 15, 2012, 10:05:01 am
What your video states is you want the NC license's protection but not to actually use it.

No, you have it wrong. I do not want that.
I will support anyone's right to just copy or clone an OSHW project, I just don't agree that's it's a good thing to do.
I want people to contribute to and improve projects instead of just copying them.
The reason the OSHW community decided against the NC clause, is because they want people to build businesses and make money from it!
It was not an easy choice.
All they ask in return is that they prefer that people actually contribute something and improve the designs. Is that too much to ask?
If you just want to clone and offer nothing else, well, fine, clone, but don't expect to build up a rep in the community.

Yes, the licenses leave a lot to be desired. That is why there are generally some unwritten "just be nice and contribute" rules on top of it.
Otherwise the whole world is run by legal crap, down to the last letter and when and where you can fart, and that's a world that sucks.
The world is not just black and white, and defined by legal definitions. It's fuzzy. People have passions, people have emotions, people have opinions.

I am not wrong. A lot people go by these rules, and have done for many many decades, before you and I were born I'm willing to bet...
If you don't want to follow them, then that's fine, I support your right to do that.
If NC works for you and your project, great, use it, I support you and your choice.

Dave.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: EEVblog on August 15, 2012, 10:08:04 am
One of the more ambiguous things that I've seen in the Arduino world is "cloners" whose main claim to fame is "we sell in country X, where buying electronics from overseas is somewhere between 'difficult' and 'prohibitive.'  By manufacturing locally, we sell to a market that would otherwise be all but unreachable."
I can live with those...

And so would the original designer in most cases.
In a case like that you would team up with the original designer and get them to promote you as a supplier.

Dave.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: jucole on August 15, 2012, 09:27:27 pm
Dankers comment made a lot of sense to me;  I'm no expert in EE or OSH but I've often got the sense some OSH projects and some pushers of OSH are just riding the OSH wave to generate sales or other motives.

To me the true concept of OSH is you're giving your widget to the world no obligations!  There are no unwritten rules, there are only polite people and those that just don't care;  Dave is correct to push good manners though.  The aim of the cloners in TRUE OSH (or TOSH) is to reduce the price, so it's available to everyone! A good TOSH project will become really cheap after a while which in my opinion is the true goal.

For hardware projects that require profit for example in order to grow, don't release it as TOSH,  it's really noncommercial you need; so use a NC license, or even get yourself a trademark but don't pretend it's TOSH, as it's just not cool.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: EEVblog on August 15, 2012, 11:53:58 pm
To me the true concept of OSH is you're giving your widget to the world no obligations! 

The legal obligations are in the license used.

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There are no unwritten rules, there are only polite people and those that just don't care;  Dave is correct to push good manners though. 

Bingo, and that's what the "unwritten rules" are!
They are not rules that must  be followed.
Perhaps a better title would have been the "unwritten ethos" or "unwritten zeitgeist" or something like that.

Dave.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: westfw on August 16, 2012, 10:18:13 am
Dave mentioned the history of open-source hardware before it was called that, but I don't think he emphasized it enough.  OSHW isn't new.  Back in the days of tube radios, if you opened up such a radio you would find a schematic.  Electronics hobby magazines (Radio Electronics, Popular Electronics, QST, and more) regularly published projects that included full schematics and PCB layouts.  Mainframe computers regularly shipped with enough hardware documentation that entities of a size that could buy them, could also design and build their own peripherals (attaching to "proprietary" buses.)  The whole "This is a black box and we're not going to tell you what's in it or how to do anything with other than be a standard consumer" philosophy is relatively recent, and the "current" OSHW movement is perhaps a reaction to that philosophy.

Both the licenses and the "unwritten rules" of OSHW are an attempt to explain how the world ought to behave, now that duplicating (and modifying) a project is so much easier than it used to be, from a production perspective...
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: jucole on August 16, 2012, 10:25:11 pm
He's some nice info about Open Source.
There is an O'Reilly book called "Open Sources Voices from the Open Source Revolution" -  a good read for anyone interested in OS.
This link goes to an extract. http://oreilly.com/catalog/opensources/book/perens.html (http://oreilly.com/catalog/opensources/book/perens.html). There is a nice part on "Analysis of the Open Source Definition"

westfw's comment "The whole: "This is a black box and we're not going to tell you what's in it or how to do anything with other than be a standard consumer" philosophy is relatively recent, and the "current" OSHW movement is perhaps a reaction to that philosophy."
I believe is the main driving force behind OSHW together with the fact that creating hardware is just getting more accessible to the masses.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: kaindub on August 21, 2012, 01:35:50 pm
I'm going to throw in a curly one here.
Mind you I'm not a lawyer, but have been involved in cases involving IP

There is a basic premise in all jurisdictons that there is an implied protection of IP. It does not matter whether you ahve an agreement or not.

In the OSHW world, i doubt that memebrs would have the resources nor the will to launcg legal action against perpetrators. Especially that these 'violations' occur in counties outside of the domicile of the IP owner.
It's really only big corporations that can afford to mount such legal actions.
Therefore the OSHW community need to respect the IP of other people, since the chnace of a leagal enforcement are almost zero.
But if someone doesn't want to play by the rules, written or not, who's going to stop them?

I think Dave's point is that it's morally wrong (to steal others ideas) , and I agree with him. Just that in this world there are some immoral people.
The OSHW system will break down if too much of this goes on.

Robert
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: gregariz on August 21, 2012, 02:03:41 pm
westfw's comment "The whole: "This is a black box and we're not going to tell you what's in it or how to do anything with other than be a standard consumer" philosophy is relatively recent, and the "current" OSHW movement is perhaps a reaction to that philosophy."
I believe is the main driving force behind OSHW together with the fact that creating hardware is just getting more accessible to the masses.

Back when they used to put schematics in the back of a radio it was because electronics was actually worth the money to repair. Manufacturers didn't really have to worry so much about getting ripped off by a Chinese copy. If there was a copy, it was likely to cost a similar amount of money - and would require real tooling costs. A Chinese copy today is likely to cost 1/4 of the western manufactured product and in some cases less. Where OSHW is contributing to free knowledge transfer for some low cost commercial manufacturer I think is a bad thing but each to their own.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: amspire on August 21, 2012, 05:05:02 pm
I'm going to throw in a curly one here.
Mind you I'm not a lawyer, but have been involved in cases involving IP

There is a basic premise in all jurisdictons that there is an implied protection of IP. It does not matter whether you ahve an agreement or not.
That is why open source software and hardware nowadays has to be licensed. Without a license specifying the permission of others to use your work, it is hard for others to know if they are legally entitled to use your work without the risk of being sued.

Something is very stupid in the world that we need to license work to make it freely available.
Quote

In the OSHW world, i doubt that memebrs would have the resources nor the will to launcg legal action against perpetrators. Especially that these 'violations' occur in counties outside of the domicile of the IP owner.
It's really only big corporations that can afford to mount such legal actions.
Therefore the OSHW community need to respect the IP of other people, since the chnace of a leagal enforcement are almost zero.
But if someone doesn't want to play by the rules, written or not, who's going to stop them?

I think Dave's point is that it's morally wrong (to steal others ideas) , and I agree with him. Just that in this world there are some immoral people.
The OSHW system will break down if too much of this goes on.

Robert
The more people start copying OSHW, the stronger it may become. Particularly if companies who want to build OSHW start to realize how much more successful they can be if they work with the designer, rather then in isolation. If two companies were selling a clone of an OSHW design and one of them is recommended  as a supplier on the project's home page, I know which company I would buy from.

Companies like IBM, Sun/Oracle, Google, Amazon and just about every builder of modems, routers, etc depend on Open Source software, and I am hoping that some big manufacturers will start to see the benefits of employing open source hardware of some description in their products. It is still possible to make great money from Open Source work, but you have to find the right business model.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: dolabra on August 22, 2012, 12:32:01 pm
OSH people are great.  I am always amazed when I see makers supporting clones of their work.  I don't only mean "moral" support, I mean spending their time to answer questions from people who have purchased clones!
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: westfw on August 22, 2012, 05:45:59 pm
Quote
spending their time to answer questions from people who have purchased clones!
I spend time answering questions from people even though I've never sold anyone anything!
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: whatchitfoool on August 26, 2012, 05:36:43 am
What specifically are you copyrighting? (seeing how its open source and all)
 I don't think its the platypus. :D



(http://img821.imageshack.us/img821/948/eevcopy.jpg) (http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/821/eevcopy.jpg/)
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: Bored@Work on August 26, 2012, 06:02:17 am
What specifically are you copyrighting? (seeing how its open source and all)

I don't think you have understood open source licenses. The strong ones rely on the author/designer exercising his copyright, and granting others certain rights based on his copyright.
Title: Re: EEVblog #333 - Unwritten Rules of OSHW
Post by: user325153 on August 26, 2012, 11:05:12 am
What specifically are you copyrighting? (seeing how its open source and all)
The copyright is indicating that you have received the product under a license. The specific license allows all sorts of stuff. This is important to force share alike where that applies. In MIT, BSD or apache software this naming thing is actually quite important since sometimes all you get is the honor by having yourself included in the Microsoft license (you can't claim they did not succeed) for example.
The creative commons license might be a problem enforcing back contributions. Because all you're claiming is actually back contributions if and only if the design is published (the actual schema) and only for the design (?)
In my opinion trademark and enforcing that is absolutely essential for marketing. Would dave sell a few million of his usupply, cheap ripoffs(indistinguisable) using your name would be a real problem. A clone would have to print the copyright but you have to also think of your users from a marketing perspective. If they can't distinguish your product by some name or logo you're really giving them a hard time supporting the good guys and in terms of the big public they would smear everything that has to do with the original.