Open Design

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= Open design is the application of Open Source methods to the creation of physical products, machines and systems.


Definition

By the Open Hardware Foundation:

"Open Design hardware is hardware in which enough detailed documentation is provided that a functionally compatible device could be created by a third party. It is not at all uncommon for the programmer's guides for a microcontroller to have complete instruction encoding formats, memory maps, block diagrams of the processor core, and other technical details that would make it possible to reproduce a compatible microcontroller. Open Design hardware allows you to see what was implemented and what it should do, but still keeps the finer details of how it was implemented closed." (http://www.osbr.ca/archive.php?issue=10&section=Ar#A4)


Description

From the Wikipedia article at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_design


"Open Design is a term that applies to the investigation and potential of open source and the collaborative nature of the internet to create physical objects. People apply their skills and time to projects for the common good, perhaps where funding or commercial interest is lacking.

The Open Design Movement is currently fairly nascent but holds great potential for the future in developing products and physical systems. There are certain barriers to overcome for open design when compared to software development where there are mature and widely used tools available and the duplication and distribution of code cost next to nothing. Creating, testing and modifying physical designs is not quite so straightforward because of the effort and time required to create the physical artifact."

Examples

  1. Open Micromanufacturing and Nanomanufacturing Equipment
  2. Whirlwind Wheelchair
  3. Instructables
  4. Design Break
  5. Open Design
  6. Open Source Velomobile
  7. The OSCar] open source car project
  8. OSGV
  9. Ronja
  10. Design 21
  11. Anansi Spaceworks is applying the principles of open source to the colonisation of space.

More Information

The Open Design FAQ is at http://www.engr.uky.edu/psl/omne/OpenDesignFAQ.htm

For related concepts, see Open Hardware, Open Source Hardware, Open Cores, Open P2P Communities, Open Peer to Peer Design.

Organizations

The Open Design Foundation is at http://www.opendesign.org/

Open Design organisations: ThinkCycle, DesignBreak, Open Design Alliance


Texts

Massimo Menichinelli's Italian Master's thesis is translated serially on the Open P2P Design blog.

Episodes of Collective Invention, by Peter B. Meyer, August 2003: An article on several historical examples of what could be called "open design.


Tags

The Open Design tag at Delicious, maintained by Sam Rose, at http://del.icio.us/srose/open_design