Open Hardware

  • I enjoyed POSS2016 in Paris Last week, I presented the current status of the EU-funded research I am working on these days, that is DiDIY (Digital DIY), at the Paris Open Source Summit. I have already reported about that side of the conference on the DiDIY blog, but I found many more interesting things at POSS 2016.What I heard at POSS 2016 about OpenDocument and Free Software in Public administration is so important, in my opinion, that I put it into a separate post.
  • As some of you may already know, these days I also work in the H2020 research project “Digital DIY”, a world of which 3D printing is only the most fashionable part, but not the biggest, nor the most important. Among other things, right now we’d need to know something that is pretty hard to discover without _local (meaning: yours!) _assistance, because it is “hidden” behind many different languages and layers of burocratic structures and inertia:which european local administrations, as well as schools, small/medium business associations, and other organizations that are NOT makerspaces, fablabs or similar, are already OFFICIALLY promoting Open Hardware, 3D printing and other “digital Do-it-yourself” activities, in ANY way, including but not limited to: training, sponsoring meetings, changing local regulations, offering spaces…?
  • time-for-fpga Three and a half years ago, I explained why it’s time to bring FPGAs to the masses. One year later, I wrote that this is the time for European microprocessors and FPGAs.. And guess what I just read today? “in the future, programming multicore processors and configuring FPGAs could reach parity in terms of the effort required. Should that come to pass, many more gadgets will surely be built with FPGAs.
  • (this is the translation of the final part of an article I published on the italian Pionero Web magazine in April 2014. The first part is available here) The official definition of Biourbanism starts with the focus on “the urban organism, considering it as a hypercomplex system, according to its internal and external dynamics and their mutual interactions.” In practice, as an almost total ignorant when it comes to architecture, urbanism, psychology and the like, I understand this to mean that Biourbanism proposes to make the places we inhabit decent places, that is places worth living in because they are:
  • (background: in september 2012 a “coming soon portal for European Businesses” asked me to write an article with the same title as this one here, expanding on what I had already written on the topic. I delivered that article on October 23, 2012, but never heard back from them, and as far as I know that portal is still “coming soon”. Later on, other people told me that maybe the idea could get some financing from this EU FP7 call.
  • (this is part of a paper originally proposed for a conference) Abstract: making custom integrated circuits at home or school that are more powerful and much more flexible than the popular Open Source Arduino platform is still a relatively unknown concept. This activity, however, is not just much more affordable and easy today than just a few years ago thanks to FPGAs: it may also have important social and educational consequences.
  • (this is a reformatted version, in two parts, of a paper originally proposed for a conference) Abstract: making custom integrated circuits at home or school that are more powerful and much more flexible than the popular Open Source Arduino platform is still a relatively unknown concept. This activity, however, is not just much more affordable and easy today than just a few years ago thanks to FPGAs: it may also have important social and educational consequences.