Internet Rejoices: Blueprints of the Maker Movement Published

Top Quote "Building Open Source Hardware: DIY Manufacturing for Hackers and Makers" just released. End Quote
  • New York, NY (1888PressRelease) December 21, 2014 - Just released: "Building Open Source Hardware: DIY Manufacturing for Hackers and Makers" edited by Alicia Gibb, the founder and Executive Director of the Open Source Hardware Association, and written by a whos-who list of the open source hardware community.

    Building Open Source Hardware is the first hands-on, how-to, best-practice guide to developing and manufacturing open source hardware. 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. It allows hardware to be designed like free and open source software that has proven so successful driving the Internet.

    "The scientific community has known for some time that open source development is a superior method of accelerating technological progress. After all, open source software is the technical foundation for many of our top corporations. Google, Amazon and Facebook all rely on it. What Alicia and her team have done is lay out a guide anyone can use to bring the same rapid technical evolution to physical objects." says Professor Joshua Pearce, the author of the Open-Source Lab.

    By sharing hardware designs and allowing others to improve upon them and re-share their improvements, open source hardware tends to improve quickly. Gibb explains, "Open source hardware is focused on innovative, iterative and rapid R&D through transparency." What this rapid innovation means for companies is that they must constantly innovate to succeed in the market. This is a much different business model than those of the past, which focused on gaining intellectual property (IP) like patents with the accompanying protection from direct competition for 20 years. "Open source hardware is disrupting the IP structures of conventional business. It will force industries to compete on product value, rather than relying on artificial markets from IP monopolies." says Gibb.

    "It is pretty clear the proverbial barbarians are massing at the gate. Decades of IP protection may have made sense when the hottest innovations were steam-powered, but consider how lame your cell phone is going to be in 20 years. While old-fashioned companies hide behind their lawyers, more nimble open source enterprises are going to trample them under foot with innovation" says Pearce.

    Young people, raised on the Internet with direct access to much of the human knowledge base through open source resources like Wikipedia understand this intuitively. Gibb explains, "Millennials expect and demand sharing economies. Open source hardware values sharing and remixing - the norm of social networks."

    Even if they do not want to start and open source hardware business, readers of Building Open Source Hardware will learn how to be makers in their own homes. Warranties are voided with conventional products if consumers attempt to modify them. Open source hardware vendors not only allow hacking - they encourage it, as they want their customers to understand their products and make them better. As Open source hardware catches on, "[it] will give Americans the confidence to fix, alter, and rebuild their favorite products without the fear of legal recourse." concludes Gibb.

    For more information on the Open Source Hardware Association contact info ( @ ) oshwa dot org
    Building Open Source Hardware can be purchased from Pearson, Adafruit, Amazon, and other book sellers.

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