Open Source Junction 4: Open Source Software meets Open Source Hardware

by Mark Johnson on 13 October 2011, last updated

Introduction

Thursday, 14 March 2013 at 9:30 AM - Friday, 15 March 2013 at 4:00 PM

Venue: Trinity College, OX1 3BH Oxford

Open Source Junction 4 was an event in the Open Source Junction series aimed at facilitating knowledge exchange between industry and academic innovation. Open Source Junction brought together the best business and academic minds to explore how the two sectors can jointly innovate, develop and exploit open source software in conjunction with open source hardware.

Open Source Hardware

Open Source Junction 4 focused on open source hardware.

Open Source Hardware (OSH), like Open Source Software (OSS), is an open approach to technology where the information needed to create hardware artefacts – such as schematics, drawings and bill of materials – is distributed, allowing others to produce artefacts, and to modify and improve on the design. Open Source Hardware has a wide range of applications, including medical appliances, lab equipment, surveillance drones, and toys.

Moving into the mainstream?

With the rise of affordable desktop 3D printers, OSH is moving closer to the consumer, as artefacts can be designed that suit desktop printing and require less specialist skills to build. Generic electronic components such as the Arduino microcontroller, and the Raspberry Pi single-board computer also provide common platforms for programming and controlling devices, and lower the barrier to entry for creating novel artefacts.

Open Source Hardware meets Open Source Software?

While the definition of Open Source Hardware does cover “dumb” artefacts, when we talk about OSH we’re especially interested in artefacts that have some degree of programmability. Open Source Software is a natural complement to programmable devices, allowing innovators to customise or improve upon the capabilities of open source hardware by modifying their behaviour and upgrading their intelligence. This enables a synergy of hardware innovation and software innovation.

Open Source Junction 4

This two-day workshop showcased a selection of successful academic and industry projects featuring open source hardware and open source software, and provided delegates with the relevant knowledge and networking opportunities to help them build sustainable partnerships in this field.

Benefits of attending

  • Find out about successful open source hardware projects
  • Become familiar with issues concerning concerning the development and exploitation of open source hardware and open source software
  • Understand the benefits and opportunities associated with building the OSJ community
  • Network and explore partnership opportunities with past and present OSJ attendees

Target audience

  • R&D managers, senior strategists, software and hardware developers
  • Open source hardware creators, hackers and tinkerers
  • Principal Investigators, research staff, project managers in Higher Education and Research with an interest in open source hardware
  • Funding bodies with an interest in open source hardware technologies

The event will took place at Trinity College in Oxford.

Please see details of the previous Open Source Junction events:

Presentations

OS Hardware Meets OS Software by Paul Tanner bio abstract slides (SlideShare)
ColorHug by Richard Hughes bio abstract slides (PDF)
Open Hardware Licensing by Andrew Katz bio abstract slides (OpenDocument)

Javier Ruiz Diaz was also scheduled to speak on the subject of Open Renewables, but was unfortunately unable to attend due to illness.

OSS Watch would like to thank all of the speakers, plus all of the attendees who delivered project presentations during the event.

About the organizers

OSS Watch provides unbiased advice and guidance on the use, development, and licensing of free and open source software. OSS Watch has a strong history in the academic sector, and runs the Open Source Junction series of events as an activity funded by Jisc, to support cross-sector collaboration.

About the venue

Trinity College, in the heart of Oxford, was founded in 1555 and its earliest buildings date from 1421, when an earlier monastic foundation, Durham College, occupied the site. Although one of the smallest colleges in terms of students, the site is large with extensive gardens. The Bodleian Library and other major University buildings are only a few yards from the front entrance on Broad Street. Danson Room, the workshop venue, has the look of an old library with leather-bound books lining the walls. Lunch will be served in the seventeenth-century hall with refectory-style tables and leather seated and backed chairs.

For info about getting to Trinity please see the college’s dedicated page.

Accommodation

Accommodation at Trinity and other colleges may be booked online via Oxford Rooms.

Alternatively a number of nice hotels are available in Oxford, some of which are listed below:

Bath Place Hotel
17th century building. Four poster rooms. Limited parking (additional charge). Continental breakfast (cooked breakfast available at additional charge). £85 - £140. Independently owned. Special diets catered for with prior notice. Car park. Child-friendly. Pets welcome. Wheelchair friendly. Wifi access.
The Buttery Hotel
4* hotel in Broad St, set above shops including The Buttery cafe. No designated parking, but it is as central as you can get. Broadband cables available on request. £55 - £120. Independently owned. Vegetarian. Room Service. Child-friendly. Cooked breakfast available. Wifi access.
Malmaison
Stylish luxury conversion of the former Oxford Prison, in the city’s most recently refurbished old quarter. All mod cons plus excellent restaurant. 94 rooms. £150 - £385. Special diets catered for. Room service. Conference facilities. Garden. Child-friendly. Cooked breakfast available. Pets welcome. Wheelchair friendly. Wifi access.
The Randolph
Spa in the basement, featuring Thermal Suite: rock sauna, bio sauna, aroma steam therapy room, steam room, ice room, and hydrotherapy. Plus 4 treatment rooms. £100 - £700. Special diets catered for. Room service. Conference facilities. Car park. Child-friendly. Cooked breakfast available. Pets welcome. Wheelchair friendly. Wifi access. Hotel parking, for residents only, must be pre-booked. £20 per 24 hours.
Cotswold Lodge Hotel
49 rooms; 1 mile to Oxford centre. £65 - £260. Independently owned. Special diets catered for. Room service. Conference facilities. Garden. Car park. Child-friendly. Cooked breakfast available. Wifi access.
The Old Parsonage Hotel
30 rooms in luxury small hotel hidden in central Oxford. Excellent restaurant sources ingredients locally where possible. £135 - £200. Special diets catered for. Room service. Conference facilities. Garden. Car park. Child-friendly. Cooked breakfast available. Pets welcome.

If none of these is appropriate, you could look on Oxford’s Daily Info site for more recommendations.

Alternatively, you can make use of Oxford’s excellent visitor information services.