We’ve been planning/scheming (!) for so long now it is great to finally get this post out the door.
This blog is the infoHQ for an open source hardware conference that we, Bug Labs, MakerFaire and littleBits will be hosting in NYC on September 23 called the Open Hardware Summit. We are incredibly excited by the opportunity to make it happen and look forward to telling you all about it.
When I was growing up, Popular Science was my favorite magazine and Heathkits were my favorite toy. Building, modding, breaking, creating things in a haze of solder smoke pretty much defines a good portion of my childhood. In fact, I’m convinced that one of the reasons I got into college is I was able to show off the polyphonic synthesizer I designed and built using scrap parts from the Moog factory down the street. Hardware was fun.
Fast forward to 2010. Hardware is still fun. But it’s gotten much harder. Just like it’s gotten more difficult to tinker with your car, it’s gotten harder to tinker with the gadgets in your life. Steve and Steve built and sold the first Apple computers themselves in a garage and helped start a revolution. Could the same thing happen today? Possibly, but the environment has drastically changed – both economically and technically.
But where is it carved in stone that we must resign ourselves to getting all our electronics from 10-15 giant companies (much like we got our software 30 years ago!)? Nowhere. And like the the open source movement before it, the open source hardware revolution will upend many long held beliefs about hardware devices, how they are designed, built, manufactured and distributed. And that, my friends, is what this conference is all about – gathering in one place all the companies, organizations and individuals who are playing a part in defining, leading and coordinating one of the most important things going on in technology today.
I invite you to stay tuned to this blog for more information about this exciting event. There will be many ways to get involved, participate and help shape the proceedings and I encourage you to jump into the mix! Thanks in advance for any insights, suggestions, critique, feedback etc you can offer. As I said at the beginning, we’re very excited about the possibilities! More soon…
–Peter Semmelhack, Founder and CEO of Bug Labs