Monday, September 29, 2008

Open source leads innovation

Do-It-Yourself, and Open-source have become a major player in this information age, thanks to the average Joe. While community driven websites exist purely for DIYers like, DIY Network, MakeZine BLOG, Hobby Robotics, the potential for solving our every day problems is getting closer thanks to these 'thinkers'. At the people’s fingertips, we all have the ability to create projects like a Wii-Mote controlled interactive whiteboard. These small projects and details provide us everything we need to know for creating them ourselves. The open-source community will be a deciding factor in our spread of free knowledge. The information age is at its peak once true communities of people are able to spread ideas and innovations freely without censorship. These websites provoke free thought, and push us to discover, innovate, create and do.

Instead of buying a game controller for $50, the open source community gives the average Joe a way to make his own controller, which could only consist of the taking apart of old equipment, costing nothing. How about an electronic drum set? There are hundreds of websites with specs to create your own drum set with simple electronics using a drum brain, or an Arduino microcontroller, which happens to be an open-source programmable interface. Using simple C code to program this microcontroller, we all have the ability to cheaply create electronics with freely available source code with specs. Even businesses like Microsoft, they have identified the community as providing quality products by introducing XNA Game Studio, freely available to create games for Windows and Xbox360.

The major contenders in this information age happen to be the every day person, thanks to open communities of doers and thinkers. Pick yourself up an Arduino and start making your own robot or Google a DIY website and create your own stuff.

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