[Discuss] Open Hardware defintion and eagle files

Mike Dupont jamesmikedupont at googlemail.com
Fri Sep 14 05:00:13 UTC 2012

Hi there,
I just want to start the discussion again about eagle files.
How can a system claim to be open source hardware if the schematics
are distributed in an undocumented binary format?

I dont see that a limited function "freeware" eagle software can
qualify as being freely usable for editing, when i tried to use it, it
said to me many times the software was limited. Also my freedom to
export the design is limited.

This falls under this section of the OSHW , i guess:
* The hardware must be released with documentation including design
files, and must allow modification and distribution of the design

well the modification of eagle files is limited. I cannot add more
than x layers, or make a design that is bigger than Y.

* The documentation must include design files in the preferred format
for making changes.
this is preferred but only if you have a full license. For someone who
refuses to use propitiatory software it is not acceptable.
I still have to see what other programs can open this xml file, but
that is surely better than before.

* Deliberately obfuscated design files are not allowed.
the arduino files are in a binary format, that is pretty obfuscated no?

* The license may require that the design files are provided in
fully-documented, open format(s).
what does may mean?

In anycase, the migration to the XML seems to be a good idea, even if
the license of that dtd is questionable. It would resolve one issue of
readability. but that does not mean there are any programs that can
read this xml file.

James Michael DuPont
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