[Open Design] The first draft of the Open Design Definition

Aymeric Mansoux aymeric at kuri.mu
Fri Mar 8 11:37:22 UTC 2013

Hello Massimo, list,

Massimo Menichinelli said :
> Hi all,
> after re-reading the previous discussions and the existing
> definitions we have gathered in the repository, I've developed the
> first draft of the Open Design Definition, you can find it here:
> http://design.okfn.org/2013/03/08/the-first-draft-of-the-open-design-definition/

Quick 2cents feedback:

The current outline feels a bit all over the place and too complicated.
Maybe some elements should be better moved to a "background" text of
section, such as the redesigning aspect. In the same way that "software
liberation," is a result of the culture that developed around the free
software definition, but it is not an element of it.

Also if your intention is to cover design beyond the production of
physical objects, then the definition should talk to *any* designers
right away using generic terms that will be interpreted locally. Trying
to define it for every "branches" is asking for trouble :)

Finally, IMHO, the definition should rely upon existing research and
work on the techno-legal front of free culture, making the open design
definition more of a meta definition, rather than a duplicate effort.

My go:


Open Design represents a creation process and distribution mechanism in
which the different elements of production respect the following

0. The source of an open design work is defined as the collection of
technical documentation and assets that allows the work to be recreated
from scratch by anyone and for any purpose using the same or compatible
free and open source software and free and open source hardware
manufacturing environment.

1. The different elements that constitute the source of an open design
work must respect the definition of free cultural work (availability of
source data, use of a free format, no technical restrictions) and be
licensed accordingly.

2. When presented publicly, outcomes and byproducts of an open design
work must be distributed with the source of the open design work that
were used to produce such outcomes and byproducts.

3. The development process of an open design work must comply with
international regulations on Green Computing and Restriction of
Hazardous Substances Directive (RoHS). 



One thing is that I still struggle to see if the above is so novel that
it needs its own definition, or if instead of we should work towards
integrating the documentation aspect and the use of free and open source
hardware into a future update of the free cultural work definition.

Hope that helps,

More information about the opendesign mailing list