Author Topic: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained  (Read 10142 times)

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HLA-27b

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EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« on: August 11, 2011, 04:56:23 pm »
http://www.eevblog.com/2011/08/10/eevblog-195-open-source-hardware-explained/

Great explanation Dave,

The problem is that any OS hardware with commercial value will be immediately copied by the Chinese. This totally kills the show for me. I mean what prevents OSHW from becoming a free resource for tried and tested designs (wishful thinking) for the dodgy manufacturers?

Shouldn't there be some sort of mechanism to reflect any commercial revenue back to the contributors? If so to what extent? Is this possible at all?
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 12:35:47 am by HAL-42b »
 

Offline patb

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2011, 05:33:51 pm »
http://www.eevblog.com/2011/08/10/eevblog-195-open-source-hardware-explained/

Great explanation Dave,

The problem is that any OS hardware with commercial value will be immediately copied by the Chinese. This totally kills the show for me. I mean what prevents OSHW from becoming a free resource for tried and tested designs (wishful thinking) for the dodgy manufacturers?

It is free for everyone by definition. No matter if you are a 'dodgy manufacturer' or not. Why would you want to restrict that?
 

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Offline Zero999

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2011, 07:20:01 pm »
It's possible to open source a design but hang on to trademarks, so Fluke to produce an open source multemeter but no one could legally produce it under the Fluke name.
 

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2011, 08:04:47 pm »

The problem is that any OS hardware with commercial value will be immediately copied by the Chinese. This totally kills the show for me.


You will need to continuously improve and innovate to stay competitive, even if it was not an open hardware project. Have a look at Intel's tick-tock model. If your pricing policy is to sell the product at a high margin, then the ripoffs might indeed offer  a better choice. You can of course modify your margin until you spin out the next, more advanced product. That way you will always be one step ahead. But playing solely with the margin can be a trap, you could use the higher margin and direct it to marketing/support and offer a much more attractive overall product.

It would be nice if potential customers chose your product based on the community ethos, but in my opinion that is a bit of a utopia scenario. I am not talking about cheap and inferior ripoffs from Asia, but about copies of a product with the same production cost but without a high 'brand' markup cost (e.g. Fluke/Amprobe). From my experience you will have to do something else to convince potential customers to exchange the money in their pockets with your product, like create a better image for yourself or your brand and protecting that.

Open-anything is a great concept in its corner, yet it cannot grow indefinitely without interfering with the current capitalistic system, similar to project Venus. Its corner is big enough for many eg sparkfun, adafruit etc but not big enough for other eg Apple, ARM, Intel etc.

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Is this a real arduino?
Judging by the seller's location, the fact that the DC jack is half-soldered and because only 12 were sold, I would bet on fake.
 

Offline mikeselectricstuff

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2011, 10:41:01 pm »
I think that some aspects of the OSHW definition are unnecessarily prescriptive, and will deter people from making stuff open-source. 

For example, I think it would be entirely reasonable to release a design as firmware and schematics only, on the basis that if someone else wants to produce it, they have to add some value and do some work designing their own PCB instead of just sending your files to their PCB house and sticking it on ebay with no support.. Whether this would be called Open Hardware or something else is a different argument, but I think that providing different flavours of 'open' may encourage people to open designs who may not do otherwise. 
A parallel would be Open Source software supplied as source only with no executables - the schematic is the source,  the PCB is the executable.


The stuff about file formats etc. is complete nonsense. PCB software,  compilers etc. are all just tools, like a screwdriver or a soldering iron. It would be absurd to say that it wasn't Open SourceTM  if it couldn't be assembled only using a free soldering iron, any similar argument about software tools is equally absurd.

I must say I'm getting a little bored of the quasi-religious 'open-sourcier than thou' attitude in certain quarters.
There is no question that a product that includes _some_ information is better than one that provides none, however the OSHW brigade seem to take a black & white attitude that anything short  of open-everything is "acceptable".
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Offline gregariz

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #6 on: August 11, 2011, 11:11:28 pm »
I just don't see the point of it all really.

If you look at Arduino - the only real thing that needs to be released is the firmware and the schematics. I see absolutely no need to release the gerbers.

A similiar thing if you look at Sparkfun's business model. They don't distribute gerbers - but they do schematics, and firmware. Distributing gerbers and design files would be of little value to anyone except those producing a knockoff. When you distribute design files you are also into the zone of 'which tool'.

I'm just not sure any of this needs a 'label'. Why not just say.. heres the schematic, heres the code... go for it. If sparkfun were to start sueing people for copying their code and schematics, I'd imagine their business model would fall apart pretty quick.
 

Alex

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2011, 11:53:23 pm »
Quote
The stuff about file formats etc. is complete nonsense. PCB software,  compilers etc. are all just tools, like a screwdriver or a soldering iron. It would be absurd to say that it wasn't Open SourceTM  if it couldn't be assembled only using a free soldering iron, any similar argument about software tools is equally absurd.

I agree, I think that the definition of open hardware has come to imply that the tools must be readily accessible by the hobbyist for free, ignoring whether he would ever want to use them to modify something. It is as you say, becoming a religion with fanatic followers.

Quote
A similiar thing if you look at Sparkfun's business model. They don't distribute gerbers - but they do schematics, and firmware. Distributing gerbers and design files would be of little value to anyone except those producing a knockoff. When you distribute design files you are also into the zone of 'which tool'.

Also agree. Even if one had the gerbers, they would need to do a large production run to get the cost per pcb comparable with sparkfun's. So that rules out hobbyists. I am not too sure about ripoffs of sparkfun products; one must also consider the sales channel which is the sparkfun website I would imagine. Giving away the schematics and firmware is probably the only way sparkfun could work with the nature of their products.

Quote
There is no question that a product that includes _some_ information is better than one that provides none, however the OSHW brigade seem to take a black & white attitude that anything short  of open-everything is "acceptable".
Quote
I'm just not sure any of this needs a 'label'. Why not just say.. heres the schematic, heres the code... go for it.

Maybe we need to take the whole 'Open' trend away from the hands of the lawyers involved in writting up the definitions of what is open and what is closed. Instead, focus on the general direction i.e. providing as much support information as you see fit for each product. Of course the fanatics will not endorse a product if it's not marketed as open-heart&soul. So what do you do if the fanatics are your target market?
 

HLA-27b

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2011, 12:26:58 am »
It is free for everyone by definition. No matter if you are a 'dodgy manufacturer' or not. Why would you want to restrict that?

The problem is that with OSHW you could sell the hardware and make a small profit out of it,or at lest cover your expenses. In this case you have to compete with a dodgy manufacturer who did not contribute anything to the design. My point is that any profit from the project should go back to the project and its contributors.

It's possible to open source a design but hang on to trademarks, so Fluke to produce an open source multemeter but no one could legally produce it under the Fluke name.

Even if they released their designs OS they would be still safe because of the proprietary IC's they use. Actually I am sure that their designs have been reverse engineered so many times that it would make no difference if they had released OS or not. Probably every multimeter manufacturer out there has reverse engineered a fluke at some point.

You will need to continuously improve and innovate to stay competitive, even if it was not an open hardware project. Have a look at Intel's tick-tock model. If your pricing policy is to sell the product at a high margin, then the ripoffs might indeed offer  a better choice. You can of course modify your margin until you spin out the next, more advanced product. That way you will always be one step ahead. But playing solely with the margin can be a trap, you could use the higher margin and direct it to marketing/support and offer a much more attractive overall product.

It would be nice if potential customers chose your product based on the community ethos, but in my opinion that is a bit of a utopia scenario. I am not talking about cheap and inferior ripoffs from Asia, but about copies of a product with the same production cost but without a high 'brand' markup cost (e.g. Fluke/Amprobe). From my experience you will have to do something else to convince potential customers to exchange the money in their pockets with your product, like create a better image for yourself or your brand and protecting that.

Open-anything is a great concept in its corner, yet it cannot grow indefinitely without interfering with the current capitalistic system, similar to project Venus. Its corner is big enough for many eg sparkfun, adafruit etc but not big enough for other eg Apple, ARM, Intel etc.

I agree completely. OSHW can not be made high margin, at least I would never buy it as such. The pricing of OSHW should be just enough to sustain future development and community facilities. Any profits made should be ideally shared among the contributors but this is entirely a different can of worms. For example how do you measure how much each person contributed?
 

Uncle Vernon

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #9 on: August 12, 2011, 01:50:05 am »
I think that some aspects of the OSHW definition are unnecessarily prescriptive, and will deter people from making stuff open-source. 

For example, I think it would be entirely reasonable to release a design as firmware and schematics only, on the basis that if someone else wants to produce it, they have to add some value and do some work designing their own PCB instead of just sending your files to their PCB house and sticking it on eBay with no support..
I think you have a real point here one which equally applies to open source software. Ad-nauseum copying is not the purpose of OS, the ideal is to create and foster collaborative and parallel development.  The Google model with Android hardware is probably a lot closer to an ideal, vendors are free to create individuality and differentiation for their products but Android compatibility offers a collaborative platform for users other vendors and manufacturers of associated accessories. There is an incentive for small players to work with the Android platform and a place for them to operate with the big guys.

For my money, what OSHW should be doing is fighting the closed models and bullshit patenting by the likes of Apple. If Apple made multimeters they would by now be claiming patent rights to the rotary range switch and a turning action to select functions and they would be using their might to seek injunctions against any potential competitor. 

What is needed in hardware is open standards, think about what made the technically inferior PC the generation long success it has been. IBM did not share all their design knowledge but they threw open a bus architecture that made it possible for other players big and small to create compatible hardware. Count  how many Apple SCADA or Domotics systems there are and you'd be hard pressed to account for 1% of those markets.   

I don't need an open source Multimeter, Fluke or Agilent are not dictating to me how I must use their product, I have a wide choice of cheap and occasionally cheerful alternatives if I'm constricted to a budget.  What I also don't need are products like Apple which are closed shut and demand I use Apple Batteries, Apple peripherals, apple software etc.

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Whether this would be called Open Hardware or something else is a different argument, but I think that providing different flavours of 'open' may encourage people to open designs who may not do otherwise.
I'd have to agree here. I think what are needed are model that encourage collaboration. To some degree this more than the idea of public gerbers has been the success of Arduino. End of the day the success is mostly down to the universality of a fairly ill conceived connector pin standard. I think it's promising that you can get pin compatible processor boards based on PICs, PICAXEs, Basic and Ladder based OS's as well as the Atmel variants. 

Quote
A parallel would be Open Source software supplied as source only with no executables - the schematic is the source,  the PCB is the executable.
That's true  and even within software I can see a place for a a mix of proprietary and open source code being a valid option. That is far from wholesale copying, the main proviso being that what portion comes in as OS remains OS hopefully with some additional OS contribution.

Quote
The stuff about file formats etc. is complete nonsense. PCB software,  compilers etc. are all just tools, like a screwdriver or a soldering iron. It would be absurd to say that it wasn't Open SourceTM  if it couldn't be assembled only using a free soldering iron, any similar argument about software tools is equally absurd.
Open source tools should be encouraged and supported, they should not be mandated.

Quote
I must say I'm getting a little bored of the quasi-religious 'open-sourcier than thou' attitude in certain quarters.
There is no question that a product that includes _some_ information is better than one that provides none, however the OSHW brigade seem to take a black & white attitude that anything short  of open-everything is "acceptable".
True! but equally I'm a little pissed at the likes of Apple and their efforts to stifle other developers, start-ups etc.  There is a real need for OSHW but I think we are still away from perfecting the model for it.
 

Offline amspire

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #10 on: August 12, 2011, 02:29:12 am »
My head spins a bit with the idea for giving away design detail free, but there is a bigger picture here.

Most engineers work for companies doing proprietary designs for a product that may have a profitable life of maybe 2 to 3 years. People really put their heart, sweat and tears getting a great design out, with many flashes of brilliance along the way.

Go 5 or 10 years down the track, all that design information is sitting in boxes in storage and it will eventually be lost all together. The rights are probably now owned by someone who has no clue.

It is really unfortunate that so much brilliance ends it life at the rubbish tip.

Imagine if we could have access to the engineering design information of the HP, General Radio designers from the 50s. 60s, 70s, 80s.  We get a glimpse of the work of these particular companies because they both did journals, and they both had great manuals. But there are so many other amazing companies that release almost no information - they just disappear. The great work they did is largely lost.

I think everybody reaches the end of the line with a design, but if a new person with new ideas can start with a mature design, the design life can keep going on.

I know of products we built in the early 80's that would outperform nearly all the equivalent products today.  The 80s design was hamstrung by the fact that the leading edge parts back then had a price 10 to 20 times of the prices of the similar parts today. You could rework our old design with modern parts, add a few improvements and have something fantastic.

The really big thing with Open Hardware is it is not so much a religion, but a state of mind. It is really hard taking a propriety design and to open it.  If it uses licensed software libraries and tools, they cannot be distributed in the design package, and those products probably will not even exist in 10 or 20 years.  If you use opensource tools and libraries, you can at least include them with full source code in the design package. And you definitely need more the a schematic. I know of PCB layouts that perhaps took 6 months and many revisions to get working optimally.  Not everything is as simple as an Arduino.

What I am trying to say is this. Most engineers working in a non-open source world at the end of their career look back on a legacy of dead and forgotten products.  In an Open Source world, a good designer would look around them and see lots of elements of living designs that they are part of.  They will see designs that had their input, but also the input of many other amazing people to make the design something else.

That is a huge thing.

Engineers are creative people, and it is  great pity that their work isn't accessible in the way that the work of painters, sculptors, architects, writers and other creative people.

Richard

 

Offline RCMR

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2011, 04:50:00 am »
This just in...

Apple claims that OpenSource Hardware infringes 17 of its patents and trademarks...

Just kidding, but it wouldn't surprise me  :o
 

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #12 on: August 12, 2011, 05:36:22 am »
The problem is that any OS hardware with commercial value will be immediately copied by the Chinese.

If it has commercial value, they'll copy it anyway. Just takes them a few weeks longer if it's not open source!

Dave.
 

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #13 on: August 12, 2011, 05:49:27 am »
I think that some aspects of the OSHW definition are unnecessarily prescriptive, and will deter people from making stuff open-source. 

For example, I think it would be entirely reasonable to release a design as firmware and schematics only, on the basis that if someone else wants to produce it, they have to add some value and do some work designing their own PCB instead of just sending your files to their PCB house and sticking it on ebay with no support.

Whilst that would force (not necessarily encourage) more of the "adding value" and building upon a design aspect of OSHW, which would be great in theory. It also means that they would have no base files to work from to improve it, so they have to do all the hard yards over again in creating schematic and PCB symbols etc. That defeats the whole purpose of encouraging people to build upon the existing design.

It would also mean that someone can't just reproduce the board themselves if they want to (e.g. home made). They would be forced to buy it from someone (possibly at an inflated price). Once again, that defeats the wider purpose of opening your design.

Quote
Whether this would be called Open Hardware or something else is a different argument, but I think that providing different flavours of 'open' may encourage people to open designs who may not do otherwise. 

I wouldn't disagree.
Perhaps there could be a version of the license that would only allow someone to use it commercially if they actually made improvements or significant modifications to the design?
The current system that allows exact duplication of a design at a lower price and wiping out "the little guy who designed it" is one of the major problems/fears of OSHW.

Dave.
 

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #14 on: August 12, 2011, 05:54:37 am »
I just don't see the point of it all really.

If you look at Arduino - the only real thing that needs to be released is the firmware and the schematics. I see absolutely no need to release the gerbers.

A similiar thing if you look at Sparkfun's business model. They don't distribute gerbers - but they do schematics, and firmware. Distributing gerbers and design files would be of little value to anyone except those producing a knockoff. When you distribute design files you are also into the zone of 'which tool'.

The original CAD files (not gerbers) are actually of a GREAT value to those who want to build upon the design.
The Arduino is a classic example because it includes a standard "pinout" that must be copied identically across all add-on boards etc.
If everyone had to measure their board and reproduce that from scratch manually then it's a real PITA and will lead to errors.
Not to mention the massive amount of work that can go into schematic/PCB footprint/3D symbols etc. That would all have to be duplicated at great effort by anyone who wanted to design anything. Not only would that suck, it could potentially lead to less collaborative effort because it's "too hard".

Dave.
 

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #15 on: August 12, 2011, 06:02:06 am »
The problem is that with OSHW you could sell the hardware and make a small profit out of it,or at lest cover your expenses. In this case you have to compete with a dodgy manufacturer who did not contribute anything to the design. My point is that any profit from the project should go back to the project and its contributors.

That works with the "honor system" at present. It's generally considered bad form to just duplicate someone's OSHW design and sell it in direct competition with the original designer if they happen to have the product available. If the original designer doesn't produce anything, then it also good form to go into a collaboration with them so you can sell it for them and you both work to market the product.
And I believe companies like Adafruit and Sparkfun give a royalty to designers if they work with them to produce their kit, even though legally they don't have to. They could just take the files and sell it.

It's a murky business indeed, but it seems to be fairly self supportive and generally good natured at present.

Dave.
 

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #16 on: August 12, 2011, 06:10:08 am »
Apple claims that OpenSource Hardware infringes 17 of its patents and trademarks...

Awesome!
Who do they sue?
The lawyers will spend squillions trying to track down the addresses of the all the anonymous contributors  ;D

Dave.
 

HLA-27b

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2011, 07:10:19 am »
If it has commercial value, they'll copy it anyway. Just takes them a few weeks longer if it's not open source!

Well yes. But what do you do when they "borrow" a 50$ OS design and obfuscate it beyond recognition and sell it without attribution for 150$? Lab power supplies for example, the way they "design" 'em is fairly obvious: take a working "donor" design - copy it - then omit everything to the point it barely works - underspec everything further 20% for good measure - there ya go a power supply. And this is for the "competent" ones.


I think that some aspects of the OSHW definition are unnecessarily prescriptive, and will deter people from making stuff open-source. 

For example, I think it would be entirely reasonable to release a design as firmware and schematics only, on the basis that if someone else wants to produce it, they have to add some value and do some work designing their own PCB instead of just sending your files to their PCB house and sticking it on ebay with no support.

Whilst that would force (not necessarily encourage) more of the "adding value" and building upon a design aspect of OSHW, which would be great in theory. It also means that they would have no base files to work from to improve it, so they have to do all the hard yards over again in creating schematic and PCB symbols etc. That defeats the whole purpose of encouraging people to build upon the existing design.

It would also mean that someone can't just reproduce the board themselves if they want to (e.g. home made). They would be forced to buy it from someone (possibly at an inflated price). Once again, that defeats the wider purpose of opening your design.

Any missing information can be contributed at a later stage. If the originator provided schematics in a non free format for example another member of the community could port it to a free format. This is a contribution in its own right. Same is true for fixing a bug or finding a bug for that matter or translating documentation to another language.

Whether this would be called Open Hardware or something else is a different argument, but I think that providing different flavours of 'open' may encourage people to open designs who may not do otherwise. 
I wouldn't disagree.
Perhaps there could be a version of the license that would only allow someone to use it commercially if they actually made improvements or significant modifications to the design?
The current system that allows exact duplication of a design at a lower price and wiping out "the little guy who designed it" is one of the major problems/fears of OSHW.

How about if OSHW projects were literally owned by their community? In the sense that all intellectual property, copyrights etc. belong to a legal body called "community" which is not abstract anymore but a real legal body consisting of the contributors and the users. You become a user upon paying the hardware price, and contributor once, well, you contributed to the project. Basically a corporation. The snag is that this would require putting a "value" to a contribution so that the amount of contribution can be weighed.
 

Offline Zero999

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2011, 05:19:08 pm »
Even if they released their designs OS they would be still safe because of the proprietary IC's they use.
If they use proprietary ICs then it's not fully open source.
 

Offline Jon Chandler

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2011, 05:56:12 pm »
I kind of like the way I have licensed my TAP-28 and TAP-20 boards for PIC controllers.

I use Creative Commons BY-NC-SA but give a blanket waiver for commercial use as part of something larger.  You can make my boards for your own use (and ITead and Seeed make that very possible) or if you use it as the controller for something fantastic, build the system and make your fortune.  What it prevents somebody from doing is taking my Gerbers, making a stack of boards and selling my intellectual property with no contribution on their part.

I'd hate to share the couple hundred dollars I've made on the TAP-28 boards over the last two years!  At least it pays for stopping for lunch on the way to the post office...and gives me cheap boards to use :)
 

Offline ludzinc

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #20 on: February 12, 2014, 06:07:53 am »
Okay

It's been a while and I'm blowing the dust off an old subject, but I have a labelling question regards Open Source Hardware.

*If* I want to distribute my work as CC BY-NC-SA   http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/ is it still permissible to add to OSHW logo to your board, or are the two exclusive?

Apologies if answered elsewhere.
 

Offline nitro2k01

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #21 on: February 12, 2014, 10:58:09 am »
Apple claims that OpenSource Hardware infringes 17 of its patents and trademarks...

Awesome!
Who do they sue?
The lawyers will spend squillions trying to track down the addresses of the all the anonymous contributors  ;D

Dave.
To give a concrete answer to this, in practice for hardware, that would be those who commercially exploit the works that are (allegedly) infringing the patents. There's some US legal case, which someone can try to dig up if they want, that establishes the precedent that merely distributing source code that would infringe on a patent is covered under free speech, which would likely be applicable if anyone tried to sue individual contributors.

This is relevant for example for video codecs. If you would distribute a compiled version of a codec (whether or not commercially -- the above suggestion about commercial use was because production of hardware will very likely be commercial) this may count as infringement, whereas source code would be ok. This is why VLC has chosen to locate its servers in France, which (together with the rest of the EU) does not recognize software patents as valid, so they can distribute binary releases of the software.
Whoa! How the hell did Dave know that Bob is my uncle? Amazing!
 

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #22 on: February 12, 2014, 11:47:48 am »
*If* I want to distribute my work as CC BY-NC-SA   http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/ is it still permissible to add to OSHW logo to your board, or are the two exclusive?

No. The OSHW definition does not allow for a Non-Commercial clause in any license. Drop the NC and you can use it.
 

Offline ludzinc

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #23 on: February 13, 2014, 12:14:34 am »
*If* I want to distribute my work as CC BY-NC-SA   http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/ is it still permissible to add to OSHW logo to your board, or are the two exclusive?

No. The OSHW definition does not allow for a Non-Commercial clause in any license. Drop the NC and you can use it.

Dang, and the logo is so pretty.   

Thanks for the clarification.
 

Offline moemoe

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #24 on: February 14, 2014, 10:59:36 pm »
Dang, and the logo is so pretty.

A nice logo shouldn't be the reason for any license.

And btw, there are several good reasons why NC is bad. One of the main-reasons against is, that (at least after german/european law) selling the products is completely forbidden, even if you cover only your own costs.

I know many good projects by local hacker/makerspaces you can buy there for something like their own costs for parts and pcb pluse a little additional fee, so that in fact the work of the members (creating the kits, picking all the parts, ordering pcbs etc) is paying some of the hackerspaces bills, supporting the community this way. Without these earnings, the hackerspace wouldn't be able to make soldering stations including reflow oven, measuring equipment and all the other expensive equipment to everyone interested.

But, in fact, if you calculate with normal wages and all other costs like a commercial company would do, these kits are still sold for less than the own costs.

And, on the other hand, contribution by others to your project get the same license. So, in fact, accepting contributions (imho one of the main reason and advantage of open source projects) will also stop you from being able to sell the project later without violating the contributors' copyright.

In my opinion, BY-SA is strong enough to enforce a 'good behaviour' of others using your project. They have to mention you as the original author everywhere and give back improvements. This way, they never can't publish your/the communities work as their own, and everybody else is able to use the work they put into it in further revisions. That's exactly what I want to do with my projects, give other people solutions for problems they can improve and use without any cost.

http://freedomdefined.org/Licenses/NC also summarizes some other points, but it's more about images and other "software".

I myself did use -NC quite extensively some years ago, but then decided to switch discard the -NC restriction for the reasons above.
https://github.com/maugsburger/
Breadboard Adapters featured in EEVBlog #573 on Tindie
 

Online EEVblog

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #25 on: February 14, 2014, 11:42:38 pm »
I had in mind writing my own "Don't Be A Duchebag" (DBAD) license. it would encompass the regular CC stuff, plus some of the "unwritten rules" to cover duchebags who want to just rip-off and undercut the original designer without adding any value.
 

Offline Marco

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #26 on: February 15, 2014, 01:26:59 pm »
I know many good projects by local hacker/makerspaces you can buy there for something like their own costs for parts and pcb pluse a little additional fee, so that in fact the work of the members (creating the kits, picking all the parts, ordering pcbs etc) is paying some of the hackerspaces bills, supporting the community this way. Without these earnings, the hackerspace wouldn't be able to make soldering stations including reflow oven, measuring equipment and all the other expensive equipment to everyone interested.
Presumably anyone using the NC license sells the PCBs themselves, so order them from them and resell them in the kits ...
 

Offline moemoe

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Re: EEVblog #195 - Open Source Hardware Explained
« Reply #27 on: February 15, 2014, 01:46:15 pm »
Presumably anyone using the NC license sells the PCBs themselves, so order them from them and resell them in the kits ...

No, I know enough projects with the creators having an abstract fear that someone could make money with their work.

I'm not a lawyer, but I would guess that even the creation of these kits is not coverd by -NC, as the partlist is still part of the project and therfore covered by the -NC clause of the license.
https://github.com/maugsburger/
Breadboard Adapters featured in EEVBlog #573 on Tindie
 


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