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Open Source

One of the perks of writing about technology and innovation is the opportunity to get your hands on all sorts of new products, usually made by folks with a vision of how their new gadget will change the world. The downside of this privilege, however, is the knowledge that many perfectly fantastic products will never become household names, no matter how deserving they might be. With that in mind, I wanted to pay tribute to five products that, unfortunately, I fear only total nerds like myself will ever truly fall in love with. Read More
Traditional gaming hardware usually includes two main components: the console itself, and a controller. Mobile devices generally rely on touchscreens for game input, but many find this can take away from the traditional gaming experience. That's where third-party devices come into play. A new one, called the Drone, brings an open source controller to a wide range of devices, saving users from having to buy a separate controller for each. Read More
Visitors to the homes of audio buffs might well be surprised to find weighty blocks of concrete breaking up the living room's otherwise colorful designer decor. These high-end music lovers have turned their backs on the unwelcome distortion and color that can be caused by oscillations of MDF, wood or plastic speaker cabinets, and plumped for drivers housed in concrete. If you can't afford, or don't have room for, large commercially-available floor-standing units like the exquisite N1 loudspeakers from Germany's Concrete Audio, Italy's Digital Habit(s) design house has created a gesture-controlled, Bluetooth-enabled tabletop speaker called PACO, which can be built at home using open source plans, or bought fully assembled. Read More

Ghost, a free blogging platform billed as the first to put writers before developers, has been made available to the public. The software was developed and is managed by the non-profit Ghost Foundation, conceived to make the software unobtainable for corporate takeover. Read More

Boasting the largest print envelope available for less than US$5,000, the LulzBot TAZ is a RepRap-style 3D printer that presents an open, no-frills design. The TAZ 1.0 is LulzBot’s fourth generation printer, and it uses the company’s sixth generation hot-end (the nozzle and extrusion mechanism for 3D printing). This printer uses an open-source format for both its software and hardware, also known as Libre Hardware. Read More
Ultimaker, which was born in 2011 as an outgrowth of the RepRap project, and which quickly grew to become an important player in the home consumer 3D printing market, has announced its second generation 3D printer. Boasting improved reliability, user-friendliness, and an increased print volume. Read More
With Raspberry Pis and 3D printing all the rage, ambitious DIY projects have never been more achievable. However, when it comes to space experiments, it’s still a professionals-only game. Start up company Infinity Aerospace out of the NASA Ames Research Center at Mountain View, California, wants to change that with Ardulab: an open source experiment package based on the Arduino processor that provides students and others with the ability to send experiments into space for under US$5,000. Read More

Intel's Futurist and Director of Future Casting, Brian David Johnson, was at this week's Maker Faire in New York City to introduce an open source, 3D printed companion robot called Jimmie. Read More

Dutch duo Daniel Venneman and Mark van der Net have created an open source home kit that allows DIY advocates to build and customize their own micro house. The Hermit House features a unique zigzag floor plan that aims to create a multipurpose interior with a spacious feel, despite its 14 square meter (150 sq. ft.) footprint. Read More
If you’re in the market for a personal fabrication machine, you probably already know that your budget might allow for a 3D printer or a CNC machine, but not both, and an additional 3D scanner would just be icing. However, all three are now available together on Indiegogo in the form of the FABtotum, one of the first hybrid fabrication machines in a quickly developing market. Read More
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