Tag Archives: C4CC

Boards (Beautifully Functional Circuits, Little Printer)

via OSHUG

At the twenty-seventh meeting there will be a talk on designing printed circuit boards that are aesthetically pleasing as well as functional, and a talk on the design and manufacture of the Little Printer, and the upcoming BERG Cloud dev board.

Beautifully Functional Circuits

Circuit design is typically thought of as block-based and purely functional; it doesn't necessarily have to be. Our inherent creativity as engineers has been dampened by unimaginative and limiting design tools, that have forced us to "forget" that functional circuits can, and should, be beautiful too. This talk will explore these limitations and how we could do better.

Saar Drimer is an experienced hardware engineer. In the past few years he's been developing tools for effective and efficient hardware design.

Little Printer

In 2012 the design and product company BERG launched Little Printer, their internet-connected thermal printer that prints its own face. It was the first consumer product that BERG had made, and went on to be nominated for the 2013 Designs of the Year by the Design Museum.

In this talk we will explore the project's evolution, from prototype to mass produced product. The talk will cover the way BERG's design process works, going to China to organise plastic injection moulding, passing certification and EMC, and many other practical aspects of making and selling consumer products that connect online.

The talk will also cover a technical overview of the whole stack that brings Little Printer to life, the extraction and evolution of the underlying BERG Cloud platform, and the forthcoming developer kits that open up the platform to anybody.

Nick Ludlam is CTO at BERG, and is responsible for the collective software development, from the embedded code running inside Little Printer, the Ruby/Rails-based cloud architecture, and the use of Amazon Web Services to scale.

Andy Huntington is Hardware Producer & Designer at BERG and is responsible for all of BERG's physical hardware, from the electronics and PCBs to the industrial design and manufacturing of Little Printer itself. He has a background in music and moved through software into hardware following an Interaction Design MA at the Royal College of Art.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Sensor Networks (Contiki, Low Power Wireless Sensors, quick2link)

via OSHUG

At the twenty-sixth meeting we will have talks on Contiki, the open source operating system for the Internet of Things, low power wireless sensors and quick2link, a protocol for distributed sensor/actuator networks.

An Introduction to the Contiki O/S

This talk aims to introduce the Contiki OS and some of the development hardware that is used with it. We will learn about the process of bootstrapping the development environment and there will be a hands-on tutorial.

Ilya Dmitrichenko was born in Soviet Latvia in 1985, grew up and attended a secondary school there, and moved to UK as soon as Latvia joined the EU. He attended the biggest university in London and was rather disappointed with the education, but nevertheless carried on and had fun working on a final year engineering project which served as an introduction to the topic of this talk. Ilya is interested in various aspects of hardware and software, spanning from WSN to DSP and several other random fields.

Note that this talk was originally scheduled for OSHUG #15.

Low Power Wireless Sensors around the Home

Have you ever wondered how much electricity the kettle used this week, what effect installing that loft insulation had on the temperature of the living room, or how humid the loft is?

Small low power wireless nodes make it very easy to deploy a network of sensors to monitor, for example, electrical power, temperature and humidity around the home or office.

This talk will give practical examples of connecting low power wireless sensor nodes to the Web using RFM12B/SRF/XRF 433MHz/868MHz wireless modules, Arduino-based hardware and firmware, and a Raspberry Pi base station running the Emoncms open-source web-application to log, process and visualise the data. Experience will be drawn from OpenEnergyMonitor, a project to develop open source energy monitoring tools to help us relate to our use of energy, energy systems and the challenge of sustainable energy.

Glyn Hudson is a hardware developer for the OpenEnergyMonitor project. Together with Trystan Lea he runs the OpenEnergyMonitor website and online shop. Glyn has a passion for open hardware, sustainable energy and rock climbing… in no particular order!

quick2link

Romilly Cocking spent the ten years before his 'retirement' as an agile software developer, coach and trainer. He spent the first two years of retirement experimenting with robotics. Then Raspberry Pi came along, and now Romilly works full-time running Quick2Wire.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Is Three (Writing AVR Firmware, Panel)

via OSHUG

The twenty-fifth meeting marks our third anniversary, and will feature a talk on writing embedded firmware and a panel discussion that will explore the future of open source hardware.

Writing firmware for the AVR: A Morse Code Beacon

In this talk we will look at a number of techniques for making the most of the miniscule MSP430 and ATTiny embedded microcontrollers. Explaining how to approach the task of developing software for constrained systems such as those with only a few hundred bytes of RAM or a few kilobytes of Flash. Predominantly writing in C and using Chris Swan's Morse Code Beacon as an example, revealing why code needs to be structured in ways that may initially seem counter-intuitive or undesirable, as well as how the resources are used and allocated.

Such techniques are essential for getting almost any useful program to run in small systems, and when applied to slightly bigger machines such as the ATmega — found in platforms such as Arduino — they can allow really comprehensive programs to be executed successfully.

Andy Bennett is an engineer that likes to inhabit the void between hardware and the software that runs on it. After graduating from Imperial College with a degree in Electronic & Electrical Engineering, he joined Access Devices Digital Limited where he designed software and FPGAs for the UK's first Dual Tuner Personal Video Recorders. He continued working on Advanced Product Development at Pace Micro Technology before leaving to build distributed database engines at GenieDB. One year ago he founded Knodium where he applies his finely honed ability to produce software on a shoestring.

Panel discussion: The Future of Open Source Hardware

Interest in open source hardware continues to grow unabated and the movement has come a long way in the three years since our first meeting. However, could it ever provide opportunities on the same scale as those afforded by its much older and now well understood cousin, open source software? What are the barriers to growth? How are the intellectual property and economic considerations different to those of open source software? These are just some of the questions that we plan to explore as part of this panel discussion.

Moderated by: Paul Downey.

Professor Cornelia Boldyreff is Visiting Professor in the School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences at the University of Greenwich, and Chair of the BCS Open Source Specialist Group. She is a Fellow of the BCS and HEA, and a member of the ACM and the BCS Women's Committee. She has over 30 years experience in software engineering and has lead extensive research within open source software.

Sukkin Pang is a design engineer and a director at SK Pang Electronics Ltd. He graduated from the University of Hertfordshire and has over 20 years of industrial experience. He is passionate about open source hardware and has four Arduino shields published. He used to tinker in assembler on the Z80, 6502, PIC and AVR, but nowadays he mainly uses C and C++.

Alan Wood originally trained in systems engineering, got lost in software engineering and open source for a decade, before returning back to his hardware roots via the open source hardware and makers movement that has gathered momentum over the last few years.

Nigel Rix is Director of Electronics at the ESP KTN, part of the UK's innovation agency, the Technology Strategy Board. Nigel has over 30 years experience working with a variety high tech companies from multi-nationals to start-ups and on hardware and software based products from electron beam lithography and laser systems to solutions for the security sector.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Lightning Talks

via OSHUG

For the twenty-fourth OSHUG meeting we've decided to try something new and we will be hosting a series of lightning talks. The first five talks have been confirmed and details of these can be found below. Offers of additional talks of between five and ten minutes are invited and proposals can either be submitted in advance via e-mail or made on the night (please arrive early).

Note that this month the meeting takes place on a Wednesday.

FUNcube Satellite

FUNcube-1 is a UK amateur radio educational satellite that is due to be launched later this year, and that uses open source hardware to bring real-time space based experiments to classrooms around the globe. Three members of the on-board computer team will discuss project goals and progress.

64-core Parallella Prototype

Simon Cook will be demonstrating one of only two 64-core Parallella prototypes in the UK.

PCBmodE — a PCB design tool written in Python around JSON, SVG and Inkscape

Saar Drimer will be talking about an open source PCB design tool, that reads shape and placement information stored in JSON files to produce an SVG graphical representation of them. Routing is drawn with Inkscape, then extracted by PCBmodE and stored in an input JSON file that's used for the next board generation. A post-processor 'gerberises' the SVGs into "Extended Gerbers" (RS-274X) for manufacturing.

Interfacing High-performance Low-cost Embedded Systems with FPGAs

Mustafa H. Yuce will be talking about an open source project that interfaces embedded systems including BeagleBone and Raspberry Pi with FPGAs, to enable the implementation of high-speed parallel processing applications such as computer vision.

Flux

Alan Wood will be talking about the recently developed Flux series of boards that are used for motion control applications.

Open Source Junction 4 Report

Paul Tanner will be providing a report from the OSS Watch two day workshop, Open Source Junction 4: Open Source Hardware meets Open Source Software.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Products (Nanode, An Industry Perspective, Licensing Update)

via OSHUG

Coming up for a year ago, at OSHUG #16, we heard three first-hand experiences of developing open source hardware designs into finished products. At the twenty-third meeting we'll further explore this topic through reflections on the Nanode project as it approaches its second anniversary, and an industry perspective on developing open source hardware. There will also be an update on developments in open source hardware licensing, a subject that was explored at the second OSHUG meeting back in May 2010.

As Nanode Approaches Two

With the second anniversary of the Nanode project approaching and in excess of 2,500 sold worldwide, this talk looks at the initial aims, commercialisation and spin-offs as a typical open source hardware design. Exploring the concept, start-up phase and challenge of maintaining momentum in a constantly evolving open source marketplace.

Ken Boak has worked in electronics hardware design for 25 years. Initially with BBC Research Department where Ken worked on early HDTV digital picture processing systems. In 1998 Ken embarked on ten years in telecommunications and volume product production in the Far East. Recently Ken has worked on scientific and educational instruments, and open source systems both in the UK and USA.

Open Source Hardware Licensing Update

It's been a busy time in open source hardware licensing - CERN's Open Hardware Licence has been undergoing a lot of work behind the scenes, and a new version is about to be released. There are rumours of a new version of the TAPR Open Hardware licence, and the debate between copyleft and academic licences rages on. Andrew Katz has been involved of all of these activities and will provide an update on the current state of licensing, and some pointers on the best licence to adopt.

Andrew Katz is a partner at boutique law firm Moorcrofts LLP in the Thames Valley. He specialises in IT/IP work, and in particular advises clients on licensing and liability issues around open source software.He was involved in drafting both GPL3 and the England and Wales version of the Creative Commons licence as well as all major open hardware licences. Many years ago, he designed and built a Z80 SS50 bus-based computer system, created a lightweight version of the Citroen Dyane, mainly by ripping it body off, and hacked together an air compressor from bits and pieces found in a scrapyard. He is currently part-time interim COO of the Maria DB foundation.

Developing Open Source Hardware: an Industry Perspective

RS Components have developed a new platform for which the hardware design will be published under an open source licence. This talk will provide an overview of this exciting new development and provide an insight into the motivations for making the design freely available to all. The product development and manufacturing process will also be covered in brief along with some of the challenges experienced, and the broader project goals and ongoing commitment to the open source community.

Mike Brojak is responsible at RS Components for the development of free resources for electronics engineers, and believes in helping engineers to be more productive in order to achieve their highest potential. His technical background is in hardware and software for embedded systems, primarily for mobile automation control. He has an Electronics Systems Design degree from Oxford Brookes University.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Drones (UDB4, OpenRelief, ARDrone + Kinect)

via OSHUG

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), or drones, are increasingly making the news, but when they do so it's usually because of their use in warfare. However, drones can be put to use in many other, far more positive applications. And at the twentieth OSHUG meeting we will hear talks on an experimental attitude and heading reference system (AHRS), using open source technology to build drones for use in disaster relief, and on a fun and novel method of flying drones via gesture control.

Using UDB4 for an Experimental AHRS

The UAV Development Board is a very versatile development board that has been around for the past five or so years, and which has been supported by small team led by William Premerlani. The board comes with a dsPIC30F4011 microcontroller, an MMA7260 three axis accelerometer and two dual-axis Inversense IXZ500 gyroscopes. It has supported various forms of platforms ranging from inverted pendulums to multicoptors. It has primarily been a development platform for experimenters and it is in its fourth major revision.

The talk intends to give a high level view of the MatrixPilot firmware as a general introduction to autopilots, with a demonstration of the Hardware in loop simulation to show how it behaves in flight for a fixed wing aircraft.

Anish Mohammed has been an electronics hobbyist and software hacker since his early teens. He spent almost a decade in research and development in security and cryptography, and these days he works for the Big Five in consulting. He is a confirmed UAV addict who owns a dozen AHRS/Autopilots, both open and partially closed, with interests in multicopters, fixed wings and rovers.

OpenRelief — Open Source Software and Open Hardware For Frontline Disaster Relief

This talk will explore how the OpenRelief team, inspired by challenges seen during the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake, is using Open Source Software and Open Hardware to create disaster relief tools. The first step is to develop a small drone that can take off from anywhere, recognize roads, people and smoke while also measuring weather and radiation. It can be built for less than 1,000 USD, and easily shares information with Open Source and proprietary disaster management systems. The goal is to gather critical information for relief workers on the ground, and contribute to getting aid where it is needed.

Karl Lattimer is an engineer who started early with electronics and programming, and has worked on all kinds of projects for many companies developing software to solve a wide variety of problems. He currently works for Codethink Ltd, an engineering firm based in Manchester, UK. Karl is enthusiastic about Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Robotics and related engineering disciplines. He is a firm believer that we can engineer a future that is more sustainable, adaptive and integrated. His interest in OpenRelief stems from a desire to engineer solutions to the problems faced in disaster scenarios, and the desire to drive the permeation of robots into our everyday lives.

Flying an ARDrone Like a 7-year Old Child

Controlling a Parrot ARDrone using URBI, python and an MS Kinect camera, allowing people to fly it by holding their arms out and pretending to be an airplane like a small child. This was in truth an exploration in how to couple independent projects and to explore and exploit the APIs presented by the kinect and the drone's software.

Ben O'Steen is a freelance developer with an interest in the fuzzy divide between physical and digital spaces, such as how we perceive and use objects differently based on how they are (re)produced, presented or controlled. Currently, he can be found working on digital library and archive projects for academic institutions, art installations and his newly completed 3d printer.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Drones (UDB4, OpenRelief, ARDrone + Kinect)

via OSHUG

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), or drones, are increasingly making the news, but when they do so it's usually because of their use in warfare. However, drones can be put to use in many other, far more positive applications. And at the twentieth OSHUG meeting we will hear talks on an experimental attitude and heading reference system (AHRS), using open source technology to build drones for use in disaster relief, and on a fun and novel method of flying drones via gesture control.

Using UDB4 for an Experimental AHRS

The UAV Development Board is a very versatile development board that has been around for the past five or so years, and which has been supported by small team led by William Premerlani. The board comes with a dsPIC30F4011 microcontroller, an MMA7260 three axis accelerometer and two dual-axis Inversense IXZ500 gyroscopes. It has supported various forms of platforms ranging from inverted pendulums to multicoptors. It has primarily been a development platform for experimenters and it is in its fourth major revision.

The talk intends to give a high level view of the MatrixPilot firmware as a general introduction to autopilots, with a demonstration of the Hardware in loop simulation to show how it behaves in flight for a fixed wing aircraft.

Anish Mohammed has been an electronics hobbyist and software hacker since his early teens. He spent almost a decade in research and development in security and cryptography, and these days he works for the Big Five in consulting. He is a confirmed UAV addict who owns a dozen AHRS/Autopilots, both open and partially closed, with interests in multicopters, fixed wings and rovers.

OpenRelief — Open Source Software and Open Hardware For Frontline Disaster Relief

This talk will explore how the OpenRelief team, inspired by challenges seen during the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake, is using Open Source Software and Open Hardware to create disaster relief tools. The first step is to develop a small drone that can take off from anywhere, recognize roads, people and smoke while also measuring weather and radiation. It can be built for less than 1,000 USD, and easily shares information with Open Source and proprietary disaster management systems. The goal is to gather critical information for relief workers on the ground, and contribute to getting aid where it is needed.

Karl Lattimer is an engineer who started early with electronics and programming, and has worked on all kinds of projects for many companies developing software to solve a wide variety of problems. He currently works for Codethink Ltd, an engineering firm based in Manchester, UK. Karl is enthusiastic about Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Robotics and related engineering disciplines. He is a firm believer that we can engineer a future that is more sustainable, adaptive and integrated. His interest in OpenRelief stems from a desire to engineer solutions to the problems faced in disaster scenarios, and the desire to drive the permeation of robots into our everyday lives.

Flying an ARDrone Like a 7-year Old Child

Controlling a Parrot ARDrone using URBI, python and an MS Kinect camera, allowing people to fly it by holding their arms out and pretending to be an airplane like a small child. This was in truth an exploration in how to couple independent projects and to explore and exploit the APIs presented by the kinect and the drone's software.

Ben O'Steen is a freelance developer with an interest in the fuzzy divide between physical and digital spaces, such as how we perceive and use objects differently based on how they are (re)produced, presented or controlled. Currently, he can be found working on digital library and archive projects for academic institutions, art installations and his newly completed 3d printer.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Kits (Homesense, Quick2Wire)

via OSHUG

For those that are new to hardware development it can prove a daunting prospect, and kits that address the needs of those with little or no experience in this area have a vital role to play. At the nineteenth OSHUG meeting we will be hearing about two such kits, one that was designed to support user-led smart home innovation and that was based around the Arduino platform, and an experimenters kit for the Raspberry Pi that is currently in development.

The Homesense Project

The Homesense project was a European user-led, smart-home development project employing open source hardware. The project was led by Tinker London and EDF and engaged households supported by local experts in the design and development of smart home concepts.

The project was developed as a reaction to top-down design approaches commonly observed in technological development and home building. Most early research viewed smart homes as a single complex system that is designed and constructed from the ground up, and assumes that most aspects (physical building, digital infrastructure, furniture, appliances) are under the control of a single smart-home developer. (Kortuem et al. 2010)

In the contrasting reality however of multi-vendor development and retrofitting this is rarely the case. Inspired also by an argument that smart homes are developed by experts in a top down approach subsequently living with a smart home is acknowledged to be problematic to non-experts who lack control over respective technologies.

The Homesense project was therefore designed to enable user-led innovation within the home environment, building alongside existing environmental and social conditions allowing end-users to address their own concerns in their physical and ‘lived in’ space. Homesense sought to bring the open collaboration methods of online communities to physical infrastructures in the home. Designing a toolkit to support this approach is explored as a topic of this presentation.

Natasha Carolan is a PhD student at HighWire Doctoral Training Centre, Lancaster University where her research considers commodification of design and production processes in the digital economy. A product designer by background, her research explores open and user innovation, service design and value co-creation in areas of NPD and manufacturing. Natasha co-designed the Homesense toolkit by situating the toolkit as a cultural probe a strategy that Natasha believes is important in placing open source hardware in a democratic system as a tool for learning and empowerment.

Quick2Wire

Quick2Wire Limited is a start-up that is developing a range of OSH/OSS add-on products for the Raspberry Pi. The first product is an experimenter's kit, contaning an expansion board, a set of components with which to experiment, software to drive the Pi, and an instruction manual. This will be followed by a series of expansion kits, using I2C and SPI to add capabilities like ADC, DAC, PWM and stepper motor drivers.

All the hardware and software will be released under open source licences.

The presentation will conclude with a demonstration using hardware prototypes driven by a Raspberry Pi.

Romilly Cocking spent the ten years before his 'retirement' as an agile software developer, coach and trainer. He spent the first two years of retirement experimenting with robotics. Then Raspberry Pi came along, and now Romilly works full-time running Quick2Wire.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Kits (Homesense, Quick2Wire)

via OSHUG

For those that are new to hardware development it can prove a daunting prospect, and kits that address the needs of those with little or no experience in this area have a vital role to play. At the nineteenth OSHUG meeting we will be hearing about two such kits, one that was designed to support user-led smart home innovation and that was based around the Arduino platform, and an experimenters kit for the Raspberry Pi that is currently in development.

The Homesense Project

The Homesense project was a European user-led, smart-home development project employing open source hardware. The project was led by Tinker London and EDF and engaged households supported by local experts in the design and development of smart home concepts.

The project was developed as a reaction to top-down design approaches commonly observed in technological development and home building. Most early research viewed smart homes as a single complex system that is designed and constructed from the ground up, and assumes that most aspects (physical building, digital infrastructure, furniture, appliances) are under the control of a single smart-home developer. (Kortuem et al. 2010)

In the contrasting reality however of multi-vendor development and retrofitting this is rarely the case. Inspired also by an argument that smart homes are developed by experts in a top down approach subsequently living with a smart home is acknowledged to be problematic to non-experts who lack control over respective technologies.

The Homesense project was therefore designed to enable user-led innovation within the home environment, building alongside existing environmental and social conditions allowing end-users to address their own concerns in their physical and ‘lived in’ space. Homesense sought to bring the open collaboration methods of online communities to physical infrastructures in the home. Designing a toolkit to support this approach is explored as a topic of this presentation.

Natasha Carolan is a PhD student at HighWire Doctoral Training Centre, Lancaster University where her research considers commodification of design and production processes in the digital economy. A product designer by background, her research explores open and user innovation, service design and value co-creation in areas of NPD and manufacturing. Natasha co-designed the Homesense toolkit by situating the toolkit as a cultural probe a strategy that Natasha believes is important in placing open source hardware in a democratic system as a tool for learning and empowerment.

Quick2Wire

Quick2Wire Limited is a start-up that is developing a range of OSH/OSS add-on products for the Raspberry Pi. The first product is an experimenter's kit, contaning an expansion board, a set of components with which to experiment, software to drive the Pi, and an instruction manual. This will be followed by a series of expansion kits, using I2C and SPI to add capabilities like ADC, DAC, PWM and stepper motor drivers.

All the hardware and software will be released under open source licences.

The presentation will conclude with a demonstration using hardware prototypes driven by a Raspberry Pi.

Romilly Cocking spent the ten years before his 'retirement' as an agile software developer, coach and trainer. He spent the first two years of retirement experimenting with robotics. Then Raspberry Pi came along, and now Romilly works full-time running Quick2Wire.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Manufacturing (Breadboard to Finished Product, Arduino Shield, Modular RepRap Electronics)

via OSHUG

At the sixteenth OSHUG meeting we will be hearing about first-hand experiences of taking an open source hardware design from being a project to a product. With insights into prototyping, some of the manufacturing options available and the challenges that may be encountered.

From Breadboard to Finished Product

You have a cool project, people are sending you emails asking where they could get their hands on one and you find yourself googling "electronics manufacturing"... Should you get yourself a toaster oven and start a miniature production line in your living room or should you just outsource it? What challenges await you if you decide to go down the contract manufacturing route? This talk aims to give the audience an overview of the electronics manufacturing process, using a project recently completed by the speaker as a case study.

Omer Kilic is theoretically still a research student at the University of Kent, although he intends to submit his thesis (which is about a reconfigurable heterogeneous computing framework) pretty soon. He likes tiny computers, things that 'just work' and beer. He currently works for Erlang Solutions in London, exploring the use of Erlang programming language in the Embedded Systems domain and develops tools and support material to help the adoption of this technology.

Arduino Shield: From Design to Manufacturing

The Arduino CAN-Bus shield gives the Arduino CAN-Bus capability. In this presentation we will learn about the design process from PCB layout and prototyping, to testing with a simulator and eventually testing with a real car. And about the perils of using a simulator, small scale production and outsourcing.

Sukkin Pang is a design engineer and a director at SK Pang Electronics Ltd. He graduated from the University of Hertfordshire and has over 20 years of industrial experience. He is passionate about open source hardware and has four Arduino shields published. He used to tinker in assembler on the Z80, 6502, PIC and AVR, but nowadays he mainly uses C and C++.

Design and Build of Modular RepRap Electronics

After meeting at OggCamp 2011 a number of people decided to form a Thames Valley area group for those interested in using and building RepRap 3D printers, and Thames Valley RepRap User Group (TVRRUG) was born. Alan Wood offered to help out with the electronics side of printer builds, expecting that only a handful 3D printing geeks would join up. One month later the group were organising a build of 20 RepRaps and 30 complete sets of electronics! They had originally decided to go with a kit-based approach for this, but couldn't find a modular candidate that would meet their requirements. So they took matters into their own hands and Alan and the group designed a new modular kit [See: DSMM and OMC] that can be used both with RepRap and other Cartesian robotic platforms. In this talk Alan will go through the distributed design and build process they adopted, as well as covering details of the design itself.

Alan Wood originally trained in systems engineering, got lost in software engineering and open source for a decade, before returning back to his hardware roots via the open source hardware and makers movement that has gathered momentum over the last few years.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the talks will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Manufacturing (Breadboard to Finished Product, Arduino Shield, Modular RepRap Electronics)

via OSHUG

At the sixteenth OSHUG meeting we will be hearing about first-hand experiences of taking an open source hardware design from being a project to a product. With insights into prototyping, some of the manufacturing options available and the challenges that may be encountered.

From Breadboard to Finished Product

You have a cool project, people are sending you emails asking where they could get their hands on one and you find yourself googling "electronics manufacturing"... Should you get yourself a toaster oven and start a miniature production line in your living room or should you just outsource it? What challenges await you if you decide to go down the contract manufacturing route? This talk aims to give the audience an overview of the electronics manufacturing process, using a project recently completed by the speaker as a case study.

Omer Kilic is theoretically still a research student at the University of Kent, although he intends to submit his thesis (which is about a reconfigurable heterogeneous computing framework) pretty soon. He likes tiny computers, things that 'just work' and beer. He currently works for Erlang Solutions in London, exploring the use of Erlang programming language in the Embedded Systems domain and develops tools and support material to help the adoption of this technology.

Arduino Shield: From Design to Manufacturing

The Arduino CAN-Bus shield gives the Arduino CAN-Bus capability. In this presentation we will learn about the design process from PCB layout and prototyping, to testing with a simulator and eventually testing with a real car. And about the perils of using a simulator, small scale production and outsourcing.

Sukkin Pang is a design engineer and a director at SK Pang Electronics Ltd. He graduated from the University of Hertfordshire and has over 20 years of industrial experience. He is passionate about open source hardware and has four Arduino shields published. He used to tinker in assembler on the Z80, 6502, PIC and AVR, but nowadays he mainly uses C and C++.

Design and Build of Modular RepRap Electronics

After meeting at OggCamp 2011 a number of people decided to form a Thames Valley area group for those interested in using and building RepRap 3D printers, and Thames Valley RepRap User Group (TVRRUG) was born. Alan Wood offered to help out with the electronics side of printer builds, expecting that only a handful 3D printing geeks would join up. One month later the group were organising a build of 20 RepRaps and 30 complete sets of electronics! They had originally decided to go with a kit-based approach for this, but couldn't find a modular candidate that would meet their requirements. So they took matters into their own hands and Alan and the group designed a new modular kit [See: DSMM and OMC] that can be used both with RepRap and other Cartesian robotic platforms. In this talk Alan will go through the distributed design and build process they adopted, as well as covering details of the design itself.

Alan Wood originally trained in systems engineering, got lost in software engineering and open source for a decade, before returning back to his hardware roots via the open source hardware and makers movement that has gathered momentum over the last few years.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the talks will start at 18:30 prompt.

Sponsored by:

Wireless (Hacking Commodity Wireless, Practical Wireless, Contiki OS, CWIG)

via OSHUG

At the fifteenth OSHUG meeting we'll be taking a look at wireless technologies. We will hear how you can repurpose low cost commodity equipment, we will be given an introduction to RF basics, we will learn about the Contiki operating system, and we will be introduced to Ciseco's new Wireless Internet Gateway.

Hacking Commodity Wireless

Many people build their hacks from the ground up, but those short of time sometimes prefer to repurpose cheap off-the-shelf components that can be made to fit the bill. A good example being a wireless thermometer for external use, where an off-the-shelf device provides an inexpensive option complete with the requisite weatherproof packaging. However, such devices typically use proprietary protocols and good documentation is rarely available. This talk will look at how to interface such devices where a degree of reverse-engineering is frequently required.

Paul Tanner is a consultant, developer and maker in wood, metal, plastic, electronics and software. His day job is IT-based business improvement for SMEs. By night he turns energy nut, creating tools to optimise energy use. Paul graduated in electronics and was responsible for hardware and software product development and customer services in several product and service start-ups, switching to consulting in 2000.

Practical Wireless

Adding wireless connectivity to your latest open hardware project is not difficult, provided that you take the time to understand some of the principles of RF communication. In this talk we will learn about the basics of wireless propagation, and take a look at some of the low cost modules which now make adding wireless even easier.

Ken Boak joined BBC Research Department after graduating and worked on digital picture processing of HDTV images, and coding algorithms for video distribution around studios. Since then, Ken has worked in laboratory instrumentation, telecommunications, low power wireless and consumer electronics produced in the Far East. With an interest in renewables, Ken now develops laboratory instruments to teach undergraduates the principles of photovoltaic and wind power. Outside of work, Ken is interested in smart wireless sensors, open source hardware and low cost solutions for the Internet of Things.

An Introduction to the Contiki O/S

This talk is aimed to introduce the Contiki OS and some of the development hardware. We will learn about the process of bootstrapping the development environment and there will be a hands-on tutorial.

Ilya Dmitrichenko was born in Soviet Latvia in 1985, grew up and attended a secondary school there, and moved to UK as soon as Latvia joined the EU. He attended the biggest university in London and was rather disappointed with the education, but nevertheless carried on and had fun working on a final year engineering project which served as an introduction to the topic of this talk. Ilya is interested in various aspects of hardware and software, spanning from WSN to DSP and several other random fields.

CWIG — The Ciseco Wireless Internet Gateway

The CWIG is a new open hardware device that is designed to be the "one and only" platform you'd need for a wireless gateway. It employs the same ATmega328 microcontroller that is familiar to Arduino users and supports Ciseco's TI CC1110-based XRF module, XBee, Bluetooth, RFM12B, X10/HomeEasy, FRAM, SD, Ethernet and over-the-air programming with AVRDude. It's sized to be housed in a low cost, compact enclosure and to be cheap to build using through-hole components. In this talk we will be given an introduction to the CWIG and also to the XRF wireless UART and programmable RF module.

Miles Hodkinson's twenty-odd year relationship with IT ended around six years ago when he decided that it was time to do something completely different. He had looked around without success for something to log and control his wind turbine, solar panels and Lister single cylinder engine, and found that nothing was flexible enough for the money he wanted to pay (tens of pounds per device), so he decided he would try and build it himself. After a number of years working on a human-focused method of networking originally built using XBee modules and now termed LLAP, his company developed the TI CC1110-based XRF module.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the talks will start at 18:30 prompt.

Wireless (Hacking Commodity Wireless, Practical Wireless, Contiki OS, CWIG)

via OSHUG

At the fifteenth OSHUG meeting we'll be taking a look at wireless technologies. We will hear how you can repurpose low cost commodity equipment, we will be given an introduction to RF basics, we will learn about the Contiki operating system, and we will be introduced to Ciseco's new Wireless Internet Gateway.

Hacking Commodity Wireless

Many people build their hacks from the ground up, but those short of time sometimes prefer to repurpose cheap off-the-shelf components that can be made to fit the bill. A good example being a wireless thermometer for external use, where an off-the-shelf device provides an inexpensive option complete with the requisite weatherproof packaging. However, such devices typically use proprietary protocols and good documentation is rarely available. This talk will look at how to interface such devices where a degree of reverse-engineering is frequently required.

Paul Tanner is a consultant, developer and maker in wood, metal, plastic, electronics and software. His day job is IT-based business improvement for SMEs. By night he turns energy nut, creating tools to optimise energy use. Paul graduated in electronics and was responsible for hardware and software product development and customer services in several product and service start-ups, switching to consulting in 2000.

Practical Wireless

Adding wireless connectivity to your latest open hardware project is not difficult, provided that you take the time to understand some of the principles of RF communication. In this talk we will learn about the basics of wireless propagation, and take a look at some of the low cost modules which now make adding wireless even easier.

Ken Boak joined BBC Research Department after graduating and worked on digital picture processing of HDTV images, and coding algorithms for video distribution around studios. Since then, Ken has worked in laboratory instrumentation, telecommunications, low power wireless and consumer electronics produced in the Far East. With an interest in renewables, Ken now develops laboratory instruments to teach undergraduates the principles of photovoltaic and wind power. Outside of work, Ken is interested in smart wireless sensors, open source hardware and low cost solutions for the Internet of Things.

An Introduction to the Contiki O/S

This talk is aimed to introduce the Contiki OS and some of the development hardware. We will learn about the process of bootstrapping the development environment and there will be a hands-on tutorial.

Ilya Dmitrichenko was born in Soviet Latvia in 1985, grew up and attended a secondary school there, and moved to UK as soon as Latvia joined the EU. He attended the biggest university in London and was rather disappointed with the education, but nevertheless carried on and had fun working on a final year engineering project which served as an introduction to the topic of this talk. Ilya is interested in various aspects of hardware and software, spanning from WSN to DSP and several other random fields.

CWIG — The Ciseco Wireless Internet Gateway

The CWIG is a new open hardware device that is designed to be the "one and only" platform you'd need for a wireless gateway. It employs the same ATmega328 microcontroller that is familiar to Arduino users and supports Ciseco's TI CC1110-based XRF module, XBee, Bluetooth, RFM12B, X10/HomeEasy, FRAM, SD, Ethernet and over-the-air programming with AVRDude. It's sized to be housed in a low cost, compact enclosure and to be cheap to build using through-hole components. In this talk we will be given an introduction to the CWIG and also to the XRF wireless UART and programmable RF module.

Miles Hodkinson's twenty-odd year relationship with IT ended around six years ago when he decided that it was time to do something completely different. He had looked around without success for something to log and control his wind turbine, solar panels and Lister single cylinder engine, and found that nothing was flexible enough for the money he wanted to pay (tens of pounds per device), so he decided he would try and build it himself. After a number of years working on a human-focused method of networking originally built using XBee modules and now termed LLAP, his company developed the TI CC1110-based XRF module.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the talks will start at 18:30 prompt.

Open for Change Pt.2 (Hexayurt, O + S Project, Onawi)

via OSHUG

Back in May at OSHUG #10 we heard about three projects concerned with effecting positive change. At the fourteenth meeting we'll be continuing with this theme, and hearing about the Hexayurt disaster relief shelter, documenting Appropriate Technology for the needs of others, and open renewables.

Free and Open Source Housing

The Hexayurt is an award-winning replacement for the disaster relief tent which provides shelter at 20% the cost of a tent. It is designed to be manufactured anywhere in the world at any scale, from local materials, as Free hardware, to house humans in need. The Hexayurt Project maintains the designs and makes them freely available. An estimated $250,000 worth of Hexayurts were built at Burning Man this year.

Vinay Gupta is one the world’s leading thinkers on infrastructure theory, state failure solutions, and managing global system risks including poverty/development and the environmental crisis. He works at both the theoretical level, building models and mapping tools and at the practical level, as the designer of the Hexayurt, he helped start the US National Defense University STAR-TIDES program on humanitarian assistance, consulted on urban resilience for Arup, and is an associate fellow of the UCL Institute for Security and Resilience Studies.

The Needs of Others

One of the areas seeing heavy influence from the Free and Open Source Software (F/OSS) movement is Appropriate Technology, and the O+S Project is working from the perspective of its documentation. It is investigating the difficulty in translating from F/OSS to Appropriate Technology at both a practices and principles level, and how we must go further to meet the goals with the world’s poorest people.

Al Razi Masri is a recent Manufacturing Engineering graduate and founder of the O+S Project. In addition to which he is working on documentation for the Hexayurt Project and instructional documents for other Appropriate Technology.

Open Hardware and Renewable Energy

Onawi is a non-profit organisation promoting open hardware for the development of non-domestic wind energy systems. Open hardware is becoming increasingly popular, as we can see in the recent initiative by Facebook to open up the technology behind their data-centres. However, most open hardware projects are targeted at hobbyists or those looking for custom do-it-yourself alternatives to mass market products. While this is a very positive aspect, at Onawi we believe that open licensing and collaborative development could have a far reaching impact on industrial production. In particular, Open Hardware could provide the horizontal technology transfer of renewables required to fight climate change in developing countries.

Javier Ruiz is a UK based digital activist and social entrepreneur promoting open data, open standards and open licensing as the basis for a better future based on transparency, participation and collaboration. His practical work cuts across various spheres ranging from citizen journalism, archives to renewable energy. His background is in anthropology and technology management, and you can normally find him at the Open Rights Group.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the talks will start at 18:30 prompt.

Open for Change Pt.2 (Hexayurt, O + S Project, Onawi)

via OSHUG

Back in May at OSHUG #10 we heard about three projects concerned with effecting positive change. At the fourteenth meeting we'll be continuing with this theme, and hearing about the Hexayurt disaster relief shelter, documenting Appropriate Technology for the needs of others, and open renewables.

Free and Open Source Housing

The Hexayurt is an award-winning replacement for the disaster relief tent which provides shelter at 20% the cost of a tent. It is designed to be manufactured anywhere in the world at any scale, from local materials, as Free hardware, to house humans in need. The Hexayurt Project maintains the designs and makes them freely available. An estimated $250,000 worth of Hexayurts were built at Burning Man this year.

Vinay Gupta is one the world’s leading thinkers on infrastructure theory, state failure solutions, and managing global system risks including poverty/development and the environmental crisis. He works at both the theoretical level, building models and mapping tools and at the practical level, as the designer of the Hexayurt, he helped start the US National Defense University STAR-TIDES program on humanitarian assistance, consulted on urban resilience for Arup, and is an associate fellow of the UCL Institute for Security and Resilience Studies.

The Needs of Others

One of the areas seeing heavy influence from the Free and Open Source Software (F/OSS) movement is Appropriate Technology, and the O+S Project is working from the perspective of its documentation. It is investigating the difficulty in translating from F/OSS to Appropriate Technology at both a practices and principles level, and how we must go further to meet the goals with the world’s poorest people.

Al Razi Masri is a recent Manufacturing Engineering graduate and founder of the O+S Project. In addition to which he is working on documentation for the Hexayurt Project and instructional documents for other Appropriate Technology.

Open Hardware and Renewable Energy

Onawi is a non-profit organisation promoting open hardware for the development of non-domestic wind energy systems. Open hardware is becoming increasingly popular, as we can see in the recent initiative by Facebook to open up the technology behind their data-centres. However, most open hardware projects are targeted at hobbyists or those looking for custom do-it-yourself alternatives to mass market products. While this is a very positive aspect, at Onawi we believe that open licensing and collaborative development could have a far reaching impact on industrial production. In particular, Open Hardware could provide the horizontal technology transfer of renewables required to fight climate change in developing countries.

Javier Ruiz is a UK based digital activist and social entrepreneur promoting open data, open standards and open licensing as the basis for a better future based on transparency, participation and collaboration. His practical work cuts across various spheres ranging from citizen journalism, archives to renewable energy. His background is in anthropology and technology management, and you can normally find him at the Open Rights Group.

Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the talks will start at 18:30 prompt.