Poll

What do you think of common projects and products?

Interested and I could definitely contribute
8 (40%)
I may buy the PCB/kit/whatever if interested
7 (35%)
Ehh, I'll have a look from time to time and criticize everybody
1 (5%)
Will never work, get away with your communist & idealistic ideas
3 (15%)
You are living proof of reincarnation. No one could possibly get to be so stupid in just one lifetime.
1 (5%)

Total Members Voted: 19

Author Topic: Community projects  (Read 9658 times)

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Offline Balaur

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Community projects
« on: November 03, 2011, 12:31:31 pm »
Dear all,

I was thinking about some kind of community projects where an interesting project could be shared between the interested people, with maybe some organizational, manufacturing, shipping efforts, etc. A group buy/manufacturing can be organized where kits may be bought by the participants at an optimized price point.

Maybe a commercial activity (kits) could be also possible where some kind of system could manage each participant contribution for the distribution of the spoils of war.

Imagine all the expert people from this community with its talent and qualities, shared efforts and benefits, the occasional loud mouth and flame wars and so on.

It looks like that there are some fetish projects that are very well discussed in the forum such as an electronic load, a battery analyzer, ESR, etc. Maybe we have some opportunity to do something together. I know that most of the regulars from this forum are real good at what they are doing (and there are a lot of things).

I don't know, I'm just thinking loudly.

Cheers,
Dan
 

Offline FenderBender

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2011, 12:57:51 pm »
As someone said on the Heathkit thread, it's a stretch. When a trillion people are trying to fight for their own ideas to be used, it gets messy. But that's not to say that some sort of organization can't be done...Definitely a challenge since the forum is not an obligation, just an activity for most people.

Well it would be an uphill climb, but if we can get over it, it may work.

I think a lot of us here have a thing for test equipment. So stuff like power supplies, function generators, ESR meters, and possibly some other analog stuff. I think once you start trying to program stuff, you might run into issues since there's a large array of issues that can be encountered with MCUs and ICPs and everyone's take on it. Analog at first. Just an opinion.
 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2011, 01:01:53 pm »
Imagine all the expert people from this community with its talent and qualities, shared efforts and benefits, the occasional loud mouth and flame wars and so on.
unfortunately, experts dont hang out too much.
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 

Offline Balaur

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2011, 01:10:07 pm »
Imagine all the expert people from this community with its talent and qualities, shared efforts and benefits, the occasional loud mouth and flame wars and so on.
unfortunately, experts dont hang out too much.

... says the second most active contributor:
http://www.eevblog.com/forum/index.php?action=mlist;sort=posts;start=0;desc

 ;D
 

Offline DrGeoff

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2011, 01:28:33 pm »
Design by committee ... enough said.
Was it really supposed to do that?
 

Offline amspire

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2011, 01:44:53 pm »
It can work, but it may need someone to setup a framework first that people can add their projects to. 

A whole legal, quality control, manufacturing and profit model framework.  It is hard for individuals to come up with that by themselves.

Secondly, there has to be a project leader who can get as much help as he wants from volunteers, but one person has to make the final decisions.

There may be community framework standards that each project has to meet - like common interfaces, standard physical sizes when things have to interoperate, standard power sources.  If the design uses firmware, you want the design to be able to update the firmware via USB rather then.  You want reprogrammable parts used instead of one-time programmable parts. You want a standardized low level bootloader so there is a way to recover when the firmware upgrade has crashed and the device is dead.

Rather then trying to stop Asian manufacturers from stealing the design, you probably want to encourage them to build fully spec'ed products from the design, and you may be able to get the same manufacturers to assemble kits. You might even get the manufacturers to suggest changes that would make the build better. If they make a better case, encourage them to make the case available as a separate part. The community gains by getting the items at a great price.

The profit center, if there is one, will probably be in terms of publishing books and manuals on the designs that are more digestible then the plain opensource documents, and providing professional services like repair, calibration and customization of the designs. Also licensing.  Many large organizations have a problem with Opensource because they actually want to pay for a license, so all their assets are licensed.  When you pay for a license, the license owner is leagally responsible. When you don't pay for an opensource license, you as the end user are legally responsible for things like copyright violations.

Richard
 

Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2011, 02:06:42 pm »
Imagine all the expert people from this community with its talent and qualities, shared efforts and benefits, the occasional loud mouth and flame wars and so on.
unfortunately, experts dont hang out too much.

... says the second most active contributor:
http://www.eevblog.com/forum/index.php?action=mlist;sort=posts;start=0;desc

 ;D

Watch out about the third in the row, he comes with his engine running at extreme RPM.   ;D

I will agree with Balaur, we are a big sky with nice and different planets in orbit.
About Experts ... its easier to find an expert baker , than an expert EE .
The poor EE needs eight life's to catch up with what it is all ready around him, speaking about modern electronics.



 

Offline amspire

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2011, 02:36:49 pm »
3266 posts!

Do you realize with that many words, instead of posting here, you could have written a best selling novel about the thrill-a-minute life of an electrical engineer, sold the movie rights and this very minute, you would be sipping cocktails on your private yacht in the Mediterranean?

 

Offline DrGeoff

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2011, 02:44:15 pm »
3266 posts!

Do you realize with that many words, instead of posting here, you could have written a best selling novel about the thrill-a-minute life of an electrical engineer, sold the movie rights and this very minute, you would be sipping cocktails on your private yacht in the Mediterranean?

... or remaindered as self-indulgent, incomprehensible, tedious offal.
Was it really supposed to do that?
 

Offline amspire

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #9 on: November 03, 2011, 02:49:59 pm »
3266 posts!

Do you realize with that many words, instead of posting here, you could have written a best selling novel about the thrill-a-minute life of an electrical engineer, sold the movie rights and this very minute, you would be sipping cocktails on your private yacht in the Mediterranean?

... or remaindered as self-indulgent, incomprehensible, tedious offal.

See! There we have it. High drama already.  Just have to work out how to add all the adoring girls to the mix.
 

Offline hacklordsniper

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #10 on: November 03, 2011, 04:33:05 pm »
Somethink like it would be verry nice but it will never happen. There is just too much tension and arguing in it
Oh, the joy of sending various electronics to silicon heaven
 

Offline amspire

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #11 on: November 03, 2011, 05:14:04 pm »
If my comments about Kiriakos-GR came across badly, then I apologize.  I was seriously amazed at the number of posts if the top 3.

It does amount a pretty decent sized novel in the amount of typing.

He definitely is a huge contributor to this forum.

Richard.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #12 on: November 03, 2011, 05:18:47 pm »
Like others have said, group projects CAN work, but RARELY do, for many varied reasons.
Any project we are talking about here almost always comes down to one person driving it and making most of the decisions.

Dave.
 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #13 on: November 03, 2011, 06:49:42 pm »
see? this is what happened when experts dont hang out too much. but when they do, they come up with "very useful" posts, a proof that "open source" project can be a success in eevblog. as a second contributor (which i really dont give a sh*t about) should i make an appeal to the your majesty to remove the # of post count from member profile?
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 

Offline Balaur

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #14 on: November 03, 2011, 07:03:39 pm »
Like others have said, group projects CAN work, but RARELY do, for many varied reasons.
Any project we are talking about here almost always comes down to one person driving it and making most of the decisions.

Dave.

Hmmm. I wonder who that person may be. Somebody with a love for electronics, who published a lot of good stuff, who's able to build a community from scratch. And with enough weight and authority to have the final word.

 ;)
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #15 on: November 03, 2011, 07:48:37 pm »
Hmmm. I wonder who that person may be. Somebody with a love for electronics, who published a lot of good stuff, who's able to build a community from scratch. And with enough weight and authority to have the final word.

Rumor has it he doesn't play well with the other kiddies, it's his way or the highway ;D

Dave.
 

Offline Jimmy

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #16 on: November 03, 2011, 08:28:48 pm »
We will play nice Dave

Someone suggested power supply for a project witch would be good because you can never have too many power supply's  ;D 

Would have to be duel channel with leds, volts and amp's

Dave could add it to his online store and with his new lab space we would design the kits and he would sell them to us to make a profit. It would be like working for him for free while he profits off the beginners. Cool when do we start
 

alm

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #17 on: November 03, 2011, 08:42:54 pm »
How much of a premium would you be willing to pay for a kit over a cheap made-in-China bench supply?
 

Offline Balaur

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #18 on: November 03, 2011, 10:13:20 pm »
How much of a premium would you be willing to pay for a kit over a cheap made-in-China bench supply?

I perfectly get your point. When you look a commercial product with the box, transformer, and so on, it makes no sense realistically to build your own. As the open source DMM, a power supply kit is maybe not the most interesting subject.

However, I will be definitely interested or ready to contribute on a kit (PCB, components, software; I'll provide my own transformer & box)  that has the following features:
- reasonable voltage/current range
- quality output
- well behaved current limitation or a constant current source capability
- clean output on/off
- a nice status panel (V/I, max, min & avg for the current consumption)
- maybe some remote control capability and telemetry (nothing too fancy, USB/RS232)
- voltage/current logging
- maybe some configurable battery recharging & analysis features

Cheers,
Dan
 

Offline ElektroQuark

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #19 on: November 03, 2011, 10:46:28 pm »
An ESR meter Kit would have lot of "watchers"

Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #20 on: November 04, 2011, 12:44:45 am »
I have to say two works about my stats, and then forget all about this last intrusion of my, in this topic.  :)

The stats speaks the truth and with dates.
I am one from the oldest friend's of EEV, that joined in it when the EEV forum was an immature baby, just six months old.
My motive to join was always honest and simple, I liked to be in contact with brains of all the planet, who have above of the average technical IQ.  :)

Speaking about money and getting rich, I am from the crazy ones who seeks mostly glory and recognition .. LOL
And still hope and wish to become memorable about any other reason, than the Sledz Hammering of the English language.    :)

Now forget about me, and continue your quest about global cooperation, among other stuff I do favor team spirit,
and international cooperation.




 
 
 

Offline Achilles

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #21 on: November 04, 2011, 01:11:37 am »
Hmmm, I think community Projects are nice, but it's a lot of chaos (when it's a bigger one) and organization needed. I don't know how much of know-how I could put into it, but I would like to keep on track then.
The argument with cheap power supply is ok..... You can buy them for a few buck on ebay. On the other side: Just putting it on the bench and plug it in doesn't tell you anything how it works.
That is my biggest liking of DIY stuff. You actually learn how it works and if there is a Problem you have an idea what it could be. DIY and Projects are more for a learning effort than an commercial product I think.
 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #22 on: November 04, 2011, 01:26:12 am »
An ESR meter Kit would have lot of "watchers"
my is Z meter/scope.
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #23 on: November 04, 2011, 02:11:12 am »
How much of a premium would you be willing to pay for a kit over a cheap made-in-China bench supply?
I perfectly get your point. When you look a commercial product with the box, transformer, and so on, it makes no sense realistically to build your own.
for a quality, pro level design, imo its worth it to be opened source, be it a DMM, ESR or whatever. "most" china-made are cute, but crappy inside, meant for short period at some level of accuracy, certainly not suitable for a serious measurements. building a product at hobby level that only available for $500-1000+ in the commercial market is worth a try. but as i said, 3rd time now, experts dont usually hang out and i'm not one of them. you/i can talk all we like, designing craps all we like. just take a look if we take this seriously, a common design enclosure are already out there can be had for cheaper cost, better if someone is willing to pool the stock and sell at kit-level price.

pictures are courtecy of http://www.okwenclosures.com


DMM or handheld measurement device...


Dave's digital clock calculator...


DSO and whatnot?


bench devices...

didnt names like adafruit, sparkfun, and makerbot ring the bell to you? you certainly can do better. i know only how to talk :P
edit: i heard last time the makerbot designer is actually an artist! not sure if its true :D
« Last Edit: November 04, 2011, 02:23:13 am by Mechatrommer »
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 

alm

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #24 on: November 04, 2011, 05:25:10 am »
I perfectly get your point. When you look a commercial product with the box, transformer, and so on, it makes no sense realistically to build your own. As the open source DMM, a power supply kit is maybe not the most interesting subject.

However, I will be definitely interested or ready to contribute on a kit (PCB, components, software; I'll provide my own transformer & box)  that has the following features:
[...]
My issue with the power supply kit is indeed that some components like enclosure, transformer, heat sink, panel meters and binding posts are quite expensive when bought retail. The only way to make it economical is if you acquire the items surplus, but that limits you options. You can't just tell people to get transformer so and so from Digikey, everyone will have a different one. A flexible kit with just the electronics (eg. not the items I just mentioned) could be feasible. There are a few kits like this out there, like the ones from ELV. But this kit is about $42, add the other components (even surplus) and you're close to the price of a Mastech power supply. Of course there is still the issue of community design which I don't consider likely to succeed.

for a quality, pro level design, imo its worth it to be opened source, be it a DMM, ESR or whatever. "most" china-made are cute, but crappy inside, meant for short period at some level of accuracy, certainly not suitable for a serious measurements. building a product at hobby level that only available for $500-1000+ in the commercial market is worth a try.
I agree that you can avoid some penny pinching measures for hobbyist designs which aren't mass produced. Some other parts, like the mechanical design, will usually be worse unless you spend the $$$ for a custom case. Designing something like a DMM that can compete with the expensive Fluke/Agilent ones is almost unfeasible in my opinion, how are you going to evaluate long term stability or safety? ESR meter is easier since most of the ones for sale are hobbyist level designs (eg. the various iterations of the Bob Parker design), professional ESR meters are usually LCR meters with this feature.
 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #25 on: November 04, 2011, 06:24:24 am »
thats why we need someone with (or have access to) proper test gears, otherwise.. its just a hobby, better buy chinese :D
« Last Edit: November 06, 2011, 04:53:11 am by Mechatrommer »
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 

Offline MikeK

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Re: Community projects
« Reply #26 on: November 06, 2011, 02:49:13 am »
I have seen group projects attempted a bunch of times on machining forums.  They are always stretched out over many months and I have yet to see one completed.
 


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