In the world of computing we are accustomed to speak of open source (open source), which means that in some systems that use this mode, you have access to the same have access to all the software, the code, to see how it is done. For example, Linux is open-source software: anyone can see the code, modify it, and create even a version that is better than the original, or that meets your specific needs. But there is also something called “open hardware”, and is equivalent to the open-source software, although in this case we speak of devices, specific equipment, electronic cards, whose design and operation is open, that is to say, anyone can replicate (of course, with the proper knowledge), the original hardware.
A good example of them are the Arduino, a series of electronic cards to experiment with the digital world. The creators of Arduino available to anyone who wants to design their cards, the components used, everything. So, at least in principle, anyone can replicate the work of these creators.
But as well as the free and open source software aims at innovation to give you faster, because it removes the obstacle of not knowing how it works the code that someone wrote, also the open hardware seeks to democratize innovation, making it give more quickly. But in addition, and perhaps most important, that knowledge is transmitted and shared.
On the 20th of April will be the second celebration of the “hardware freedom day”, which is intended to be celebrate in all over the world. The coordination of this is in charge of the DFF (Digital Freedom Foundation) and is a great opportunity to inform the public about the benefits of open hardware as well as see the number ever-increasing of projects and communities that host this type of open source projects.
Many universities and institutions, both public and private, are making the case to this interesting initiative of Hardware Freedom Day. For example, in Facebook, AltLab has joined to this celebration by making a “day-of-doors -in their laboratories of Portugal – the numerical control machines (that allow, for example, to create parts on 3D printers, as well as robots and other “wonders” of the hardware, where will the jobs already functional as well as those that are still working. Members who develop these projects will be available to explain and answer questions. AltLab even suggests that if those who are going to their labs to carry their own projects, they will be able to look and make suggestions of how to make them better.
Why not join this initiative? Without a doubt, the idea is great and we can all learn from it. If you, the reader/reader, have a project open hardware, why not share it with us? You may even be able to interest others and build a wider community and even to get funds to develop their ideas. I wish you, and those who develop hardware (and software), decide to support this proposal interesting that in the end what he seeks is to share the knowledge.