In a previous post about “Communist design” I got a weird thought about taking the opposite into consideration but in the real world. Open source vehicles, buildings, spaceships, boats, etc. People combining their thoughts for a better solutions. I found that these ideas already exist.
My first I’d already heard of was the Joint Strike Fighter aka JSF F-35 jet fighter. This jet fighter is a collaboration of a couple companies and countries. It’s actually a working plane that will be the next major fighter. It has stealth, virtical lift off, supersonic speed, massive firepower, and advanced computer and camera integration. In a word… COOL.
The next on our list… The OScar. Right now this car is strictly conceptual. The concept started in 1999 but became fully open to everyone in 2006. According to an article posted at Autoblog the Open source car actually debuted last March (2007) with it’s first concept vehicle. Looks pretty sleek and not totally the spec that is posted on the OScar website but there’s a lot of room to really make this something that could change the world.
Watching a video on TED I also was very intrigued by the open source textbook publishing company. Imagine, books that evolve quickly and are cheaper because the book can be printed and bound on demand. Our kids wouldn’t be left behind with old information because new books are in print, etc. This really would have helped out when Pluto was ruled out as real planet.
How about a music synthesizer? this video is from South by Southwest in 2006. A lady namd Limor Fried talks about her open source synthesizer and open source in the real world.
Why not collaborate on food? Yes it’s true. There is an open source cookbook and open source beer project.
So, there you have it. Those are some of the great real world applications for open source. I’m sure there are more and I would be very happy to know about them. If you are technically minded though, I also love to mention cool sites like: Makezine, Hack a Day, and Hackszine. It’s pretty much open source to me because the comments allow you to combine your ideas for a better final project.