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Open Hardware: What's It All About?

Sep 21, 2010, 21:04 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jeff Osier-Mixon)

"Open source, open licensing, free redistribution, collaborative, and community-based development – many hands make light work. They've done wonders for Linux, but can these concepts apply to hardware as well as software?

"As reported on Linux.com in 2007, the inspiration for open hardware has been around quite awhile, almost exclusively in embedded and server hardware. A free SPARC implementation produced in 2000 (the LEON processor) and released under a dual GPL/LGPL license was the first open hardware platform.

"The open hardware movement took off in 2005 with the advent of the popular Arduino microcontroller released under a Creative Commons license. And today dozens of open hardware projects exist, many capable of running Linux. Phillip Torrone has wrritten excellent overviews of the state of open hardware for Make: magazine in 2007, 2008, and 2009."

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