Open Hardware Repository - Introduction

The Open Hardware Repository ohwr.org is a place on the web for electronics designers at experimental physics facilities to collaborate on open hardware designs, much in the philosophy of the free software movement.

The Manifesto on the ohr-support project wiki page explains the numerous advantages to working in a completely open environment, while on these same ohr-support wiki pages you can find how you can set up your own project. Note that all information on this site is accessible to anyone; you will not be able to access more material by registering.

The CERN Open Hardware Licence governs the use, copying, modification and distribution of hardware design documentation, and the manufacture and distribution of products. Other open licence types may be used for projects on the OHR site.


Open Hardware can be commercial

Commercial Non-commercial
Open Winnning combination. Best of both worlds. Whole support burden falls on developers. Not scalable.
Proprietary Vendor lock-in. Dedicated non-reusable projects.

Statistics (January 2013)

There are 100 projects on ohwr:
  • 52 hardware projects
  • 39 HDL or Software projects
  • 9 other projects

There are eleven instititutes leading the different projects: CERN, Soleil, GSI, Brazillian Light Source, University of Bristol, Warsaw University of Technology, University of Zurich, University of Pavia, Rockefeller University, University of Cape Town, Heidelberg University.
And there are 16 commercial companies are involved who develop, produce and/or test open hardware products.


What CERN writes about OHR


What others write about OHR


Companies using the OHR site

In December 2012 sixteen companies from eleven countries were actively using the OHR site to develop or produce open hardware, software and drivers. These companies may be paid for the open developments.


Licences used for CERN Open Hardware designs

CERN uses the following licences for most Open Hardware designs:

Hardware

Software

Gateware

  • GNU Lesser General Public License - GNU LGPL for Gateware, i.e. HDL designs whose purpose is to end up as FPGA bistreams or ASICs (VHDL, Verilog, ...)
    • Example of use in an OHR project
    • Note: for gateware there is currently no proper copyleft license. We hope one day that the CERN OHL will evolve to cover HDL designs adequately [1]. In the meantime we are using LGPL (a license which was never intended for gateware) as many other people do, including many projects in opencores.org.

See also: Final Report of the Open Source Software Licence Task Force that formulates recommendations on which licence should be used for software developed at CERN.


Open Hardware Repository


See also

Open Hardware Workshops

Articles about Open Hardware

Other Open Hardware sites

OH directories

Open Source Hardware Organizations


13 March 2014