[Discuss] Free Hardware

Matt Maier blueback09 at gmail.com
Fri Mar 20 00:39:20 UTC 2015

I think of the "source" in open source hardware as referring to the design.
That's why "free hardware" doesn't make much sense, but "free hardware
designs" does. It's the source/designs that are licensed. The hardware
itself is already free by default.
On Mar 19, 2015 3:27 PM, "Drew Fustini" <pdp7pdp7 at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Thu, Mar 19, 2015 at 12:12 PM, Matt Maier <blueback09 at gmail.com> wrote:
> > It seems unlikely that he'd reach out to the open source hardware
> community
> > because he doesn't think open source hardware is really relevant to what
> > he's doing (free software).
> Yes, I believe rms will never support a definition with the term "Open
> Source", be it in the Software or Hardware context.  I think he
> refuses to support anything that does not promote freedom as a matter
> of morality.  Open Source takes a more pragmatic approach.
> I do like most of his points after reading his first two essays on
> "Free Hardware".  I especially liked how he describes the concept of
> Free Hardware Designs.  I sometimes get confused about exactly what we
> are talking about when we talk about hardware licensing.  It was a
> good reminder that the discussion is about hardware design files, not
> the hardware itself.
> I think the term Open Source Hardware Design better describes what
> this community (OSHWA) is about, but I don't think it really makes
> practical sense to change it.  In regards, to "Free Hardware", I think
> the term Libre Hardware Design is a better description.  Just as in
> software, I think Libre/Free and Open Source are different concepts,
> but they both tend to lead to positive outcomes: better technology
> because people are encouraged to build on the work of others.
> cheers,
> drew
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