Author Topic: [all gone] Free PCBs for OSHW  (Read 7117 times)

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Offline kasbah

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[all gone] Free PCBs for OSHW
« on: August 11, 2016, 10:47:17 PM »
I made a site to share open source hardware electronics projects: kitnic.it. The focus is on an easy to find Gerber downloads and making buying the right parts as easy as possible. The site itself is open source.

I am offering free PCB vouchers to get your PCBs made through Dangerous Prototype's PCB service for 20 projects that register. The submission process is outlined in the readme.

Feel free to get in touch on this forum, GitHub or Twitter if you have any questions or need any help with the process.

EDIT - All gone now, sorry!
« Last Edit: October 10, 2017, 01:45:48 AM by kasbah »
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Offline kasbah

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Offline PDXjason

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2017, 02:06:16 AM »
Important question: is the name kitnic.it based on the French term 'kinigit' from Holy Grail?
 

Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2017, 03:53:22 AM »
Ha! No it's based on kit + picnic and the insinuation, in English, that a picnic is something easy and fun. :D
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Offline jolshefsky

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2017, 05:21:59 AM »
So I can't just upload my gerbers? No? Well then no, thanks.

I like the idea behind open source and have supplied some projects that way, but I'll just stick to putting up a Gerber zip file and letting people do as they please. Going through the painful gauntlet of white-beards to become a master of Github does not seem like fun to an old guy like me.
May your deeds return to you tenfold.
 
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Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2017, 05:44:22 AM »
Yes, it's a bit involved at the moment, especially if you don't know Git or GitHub, hence the free PCB incentive. I am working on an easier upload process as we speak!
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Offline donotdespisethesnake

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2017, 11:14:16 PM »
It looks nice, but I have seen several nice sites come and go, so I always wonder "how is it funded?". Without a clear business model, these sites are often someone's pet project which disappears after a few months.

I'm not sure how much use it is, people who can order PCBs usually know how to get gerbers and order parts.
Bob
 
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Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2017, 12:50:52 AM »
Regarding the utility of it, hopefully it will prove itself. The idea is to make the whole process of replicating someone else's project as frictionless as possible and to encourage designers to properly document their bill of materials in a standard way.

Kitnic.it is completely funded by me for now. Here is a break down of costs I put in my presentation at FOSDEM.

Code: [Select]
| Item               | Cost  |
|--------------------+-------|
| Google Web Store   | $5    |
| Contractor's time  | $2500 |
| Free PCB promotion | $500  |
| Domain names       | $20   |
| Hosting            | $0    |
| Kaspar's time      | ???   |

As I add features the hosting costs are going to go up (they are actually already a few bucks a month now as I am experimenting with more server intensive things). To make it more sustainable and try and compensate myself for the time spent I will firstly be adding referral tracking to PCB batching services: alongside the "download gerbers" links you will see "order at OshPark" or "order at PCBway" links and Kitnic.it will get a cut of the sales price if you order through those.

Longer term, if there are enough people using the site, it could be worth tracking referrals on individual component purchases as well. Aside from that it might be worth offering, paid for, private hosting for company internal projects.

On the whole I have designed Kitnic.it to have a low maintenance burden and I think I have a pretty good track record of maintaining these projects, even without pay. The first commit to the browser extension was in June 2015!
« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 02:11:10 AM by kasbah »
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Online Pitrsek

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2017, 05:48:06 AM »
Hi, nice project!

Aside from that it might be worth offering, paid for, private hosting for company internal projects.
I can imagine referrals working(if they exist at mouser? dunno), some decent electronics commercials as well(non obtrusive, from the industry).
But hosting some company internal projects - it's not gonna fly. No sane company would ever do it.

You got me intrigued wit the vouchers, are there some still left?
Do I need to release the design right with the registration? I don't want to release old revision of the board(B2), as I'm working on new (hopefully final) version version.
https://hackaday.io/project/21119-pidsp
https://github.com/freeDSP/PiDSP


 

 
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Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2017, 06:34:51 AM »
Well, I am not expecting military contractors or super secretive companies to go for it for sure. Companies do host their private code on GitHub, so why not their PCBs somewhere else?

There are currently 5 vouchers left and you only get one by adding your design. It can be a work in progress though and I will update it as you update your project.

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Offline donotdespisethesnake

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2017, 11:15:06 PM »
To make it more sustainable and try and compensate myself for the time spent I will firstly be adding referral tracking to PCB batching services: alongside the "download gerbers" links you will see "order at OshPark" or "order at PCBway" links and Kitnic.it will get a cut of the sales price if you order through those.

So basically it's just a file hosting service, and everyone gets a cut except the designer... To be honest, it just looks like another company trying to leech off open source projects without giving anything back. I can't see why I would post my projects to your site and help you make money off my design, rather than post it on github.
Bob
 
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Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2017, 12:06:13 AM »
To be clear: I don't make any money from it at this point and am giving away PCB vouchers to the designers.

The reason to use Kitnic additionally to or instead of GitHub is that it's specifically designed to present PCB designs. GitHub is designed for code and it makes it very opaque for visitors to your project: they can't easily see the information they need. I am continually working towards making Kitnic more useful for designers and visitors alike. One thing I added recently is part information inside the BOM. GitHub isn't going to add things like this.



I think rewarding the designers for putting up their projects, outside of this promotion, is definitely on the table but the initial financial goal for me is to make Kitnic itself sustainable and then look at options like this. I am currently also considering incorporating it as a not for profit foundation.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2017, 01:48:37 AM by kasbah »
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Offline Matir

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2017, 08:26:56 AM »
I actually really like this concept, but then again, I'm a software guy entering the hardware world.  Git and Github are 2nd nature for me.  Bravo on the idea.
 

Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2017, 11:34:42 PM »
Thanks Matir, I really like Git but I can see why some hardware engineers don't want to learn it. That's why I am building a simpler "upload" feature. I will continue to use Git in the background though and am also excited to work on tools that make more use of Git versioning for electronics designs.

Quite a few years ago Evil Mad Scientist did an intersting experiment with visual diffs for gEDA designs and it would be interesting to try and do more experiments like this and make it independent of the CAD program.
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Offline SKHILLBILLYSlures

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2017, 11:02:43 AM »
He's just trying to an old some new tricks lol
What are the disadvantages of this over eagle or vise versa
There is so much info I'm DroooooooolING all over it
 

Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #15 on: July 04, 2017, 01:50:48 AM »
 ??? I am not sure what you mean SKHILLBILLYSlures. Kitnic.it is for designs made with any CAD software, including Eagle.
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Offline SKHILLBILLYSlures

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #16 on: July 04, 2017, 07:06:31 AM »
Oh now I see that it's an amazing service to host projects I had it confused with the idea that it was design software unless I must still be confused I like this idea though
There is so much info I'm DroooooooolING all over it
 

Offline Clear as mud

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2017, 03:39:35 AM »
I think you can still do version control on KiCAD designs too.  I looked into it with the July 2013 version, which was the latest stable revision for Windows for a long time.  Now they have a newer version and I have not been actively using it, so I'm less familiar with it, but I think the files are all still text-based and you can use Git or other version control software.  Someone once made a list of which files you need to keep, which ones to throw away, and generally how to set up the version control.
 

Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #18 on: July 18, 2017, 12:52:10 AM »
Sure, you can still version control KiCAD designs. I use git for everything myself. The interesting thing would be to make diffs and merges do something useful from a CAD perspective.
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Offline Icchan

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #19 on: July 25, 2017, 05:38:10 AM »
I really like the idea, I hope it'll get off the ground.

I'm going to release something there when I get it ready :)
 
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Offline kasbah

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Re: Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #20 on: September 23, 2017, 09:55:46 PM »
Better hurry, only one voucher left!
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Offline CM800

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Re: [all gone] Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #21 on: November 10, 2017, 09:32:35 PM »


Good god....  :-DD
 

Offline kasbah

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Re: [all gone] Free PCBs for OSHW
« Reply #22 on: November 11, 2017, 03:07:50 AM »
What you see there is a result of Dusjagr's DIY CAD which is a process of letting people layout PCBs using bits of laminated paper and pens. You don't really need any electronics experience to layout PCBs that way. The one you posted is one of the first designs made with this method. I quite like it, it hints at the creative freedom the method gives you. Some of the later ones may be more universally pleasing.

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