December 6, 2005  ·  Lessig

Things are about to get very interesting. Sun’s got a cool (actually CoolThreads) new technology. Here’s the announcement. But here’s the really cool part: “Plans to Open Source Processor Technology to Developer Communities.” “Open source” hardware? What’s that mean? Stay tuned …

  • http://www.echolife.net Scott

    This would not be the first open hardware project. There are currently people developing an OpenGraphics card. Here is their website, http://wiki.duskglow.com/tiki-index.php?page=Open-Graphics .

  • http://scottmark.blogspot.com Scott Mark

    Simon Phipps – their Chief Open Source Officer – blogged about this here – http://blogs.sun.com/roller/page/webmink?entry=open_source_hardware. Like he points out, this is cool in a different way than FOSS, which can be pulled down and compiled/used much more easily. This is really about community and transparency for a better product. A very Good Thing.

  • http://scottmark.blogspot.com Scott Mark

    Simon Phipps – their Chief Open Source Officer – blogged about this here – http://blogs.sun.com/roller/page/webmink?entry=open_source_hardware. Like he points out, this is cool in a different way than FOSS, which can be pulled down and compiled/used much more easily. This is really about community and transparency for a better product. A very Good Thing.

  • http://scottmark.blogspot.com Scott Mark

    Simon Phipps – their Chief Open Source Officer – blogged about this here – http://blogs.sun.com/roller/page/webmink?entry=open_source_hardware. Like he points out, this is cool in a different way than FOSS, which can be pulled down and compiled/used much more easily. This is really about community and transparency for a better product. A very Good Thing.

  • Greg Steffensen

    Agreed- this may be important, but not in the way that open source is. The number of people able to contribute to this is too small, and their time too valuable, for groups of amateurs to make incremental improvements in their spare time. Its likely more valuable to institutions- universities, and maybe governments- that will be able to do their own work more efficiently with a complete understanding of how their hardware works.

  • Joe Buck

    Open source hardware isn’t new. See opencores.org for quite a bit of it. Once you grasp what is already out there, you’ll see that Sun’s contribution, while generous, is by no means world-changing.

    Digital logic design based on FPGAs could be widely accessible; setups suitable for hobbyists don’t cost that much.

  • http://www.dodoskido.com Tommy

    What the open source movement needs are open source usability engineers or designers.