Open Source Hardware: Wonderful!

A really interesting person, Lars Zimmermann, came to the course and gave a lecture about open source hardware, not software. You may know about it already but it is a great and huge subject and one that more people should know about.

This is the symbol you should look out for that denotes something is open source:










The list of things that people have made and shared are endless…

Amateur radio, Audio electronics, Automotive, Cameras, Computer systems, Machines and tools, Medical instruments, Music electronics, Networking, Robotics etc. etc….

For example here is a LED throwy called a blinky:

And here is something I would like to make: an open source beehive!

Lars used a new tool that he is trying out to help projects think how they can ‘open source’ the project. He used the Granville Community Cafe as an example project. The tool helped us come up with an enormous number of ideas for the cafe and how to make it more open, provide more roles and reach the community’s needs more fully. You can see more about his Open Platform Design tool here . These are some of  the flip charts from the exercises:

P1320621 P1320622 P1320623










Lars has so many interesting projects that he is involved in like:

OPEN it Agentur Logo and osim-button-222andOPENiT by JOK

Lars made a plea for people use to ‘Creative Commons’ licenses ( He also asked people to think about allowing others to make money from ideas they license as long as the original idea is attributed to the first person that made it.  I have used Creative Commons but felt I didn’t want anyone to make money from my work as that a) wasn’t fair to me and b) I didn’t want to encourage a monied economy. But actually people need to earn a living and by using my idea, others are spreading it  and building on it. So it is better for me, the originator, as well as the developer who works on my idea.

For more information visit about open source hardware see Lars’ blog:



or for general info:

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