Putting design files into fossil repo?

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Jonathan Trites

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Jan 28, 2017, 2:11:35 AM1/28/17
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Would it be a good idea to have the design files (gerber, etc) in the fossil repo next to the source code so that all of the files related to the PiDP-8 are next to each other in one place, and also versioned?

Warren Young

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Jan 28, 2017, 2:15:30 AM1/28/17
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On Saturday, January 28, 2017 at 12:11:35 AM UTC-7, Jonathan Trites wrote:
Would it be a good idea to have the design files (gerber, etc) in the fossil repo next to the source code so that all of the files related to the PiDP-8 are next to each other in one place, and also versioned?

I'm willing, if Oscar allows it. 

Jonathan Trites

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Jan 28, 2017, 2:18:05 AM1/28/17
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I suppose Oscar should declare a particular license to make it all official. 

The Creative Commons ones come to mind first, but I don't know the exact ins and outs of those.

Warren Young

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Jan 28, 2017, 2:29:45 AM1/28/17
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On Saturday, January 28, 2017 at 12:18:05 AM UTC-7, Jonathan Trites wrote:
I suppose Oscar should declare a particular license to make it all official. 

The Creative Commons ones come to mind first, but I don't know the exact ins and outs of those.

The proper license should depend on whether Oscar intends to do another run of this project. If so, then something that blocks other commercial efforts would be a good idea, since you don't want someone else undercutting the market and preventing Oscar from recouping his investments. (And hopefully, generating a profit!)

A truly free license would only be advisable if the last run of PiDP-8/I boards, panels, and switches is sold out, except for spares. At that point, you might as well let the community make one-offs to their heart's content.

(Speaking as someone formerly in the PCBs, electronic parts, and kits business...and who doesn't want to go back in. :) )

Jens Andree

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Jan 31, 2017, 8:57:29 AM1/31/17
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I've never seen the PiDP-8 (hw) as an Open Source project and because it isn't we've all been able to order kits from Oscar that's been both bug free and verified - let alone all the support!
Sourcing the front panel would've been both a pain, and very expensive, if it hadn't been for Oscar and all his hard work, so every penny he makes on this - which isn't a lot I guess baring in mind all the hours he's put in - are well deserved.

If he makes it Open Source when it reaches end of life, or orders have completely stopped, then it's his choice. I for one prefer to every once in a blue moon order an actual complete kit and not just make all of them myself (including all the iterations for errors and stupid mistakes... ;) )

Jonathan Trites

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Jan 31, 2017, 10:27:47 AM1/31/17
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In some sense it is already open source in spirit as the design files are on his website freely downloadable right now. Any of us can take them and distribute them right now. Maybe not legally, but nothing is physically stopping the process. Oscar has also provided an updated design file in another topic in this group, so he doesn't seem to be wanting to close down the later versions. There is a “noncommercial” version of the cc license that maybe could address that concern.

My only intent here was to get the files in one place and somewhat have a redundant source of the most up to date files in case Oscar was done with the project.

I of course want him to profit from his work because I also would not have done the project unless it was already in a finalized kit form.

Oscar Vermeulen

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Jan 31, 2017, 11:38:57 AM1/31/17
to Jonathan Trites, PiDP-8
Jon, all,

Sorry for the late reply. Just to confirm the design files are open source hardware. 
Feel free to store them anywher, and to do anything with them really! No copyright.

Kind regards,

Oscar.

Jonathan Trites

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Jan 31, 2017, 11:49:28 AM1/31/17
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Does that imply the files are public domain?

In general, I think one of the open source licenses is better as that keeps the files from being closed up, but your choice.

Warren Young

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Jan 31, 2017, 12:56:53 PM1/31/17
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On Tuesday, January 31, 2017 at 9:49:28 AM UTC-7, Jonathan Trites wrote:
Does that imply the files are public domain?

Not all countries' legal systems recognize that concept. I believe the legal doctrine is that you can't choose to give up a right, you can only elect not to exercise it at a given time. To take it from legal theory down to schoolyard level, a copyright license is a "no takebacks" rule, whereas a declaration of "no copyright" could be retroactively rescinded.

That's one of the reasons Creative Commons was created: a license is a binding declaration. The copyright holder can choose to relicense it later, but the rightsholder cannot affect the copies already made after the license was granted.

But I am not a lawyer, and if I was, I am not your lawyer. :)
 

In general, I think one of the open source licenses is better as that keeps the files from being closed up, but your choice.


Only viral licenses prevent "closing up". SIMH and most of the current PiDP-8/I software is now under a BSD/X11 style license, which does not have that property.

Since we're going through the what-ifs here, everyone reading this should clone my repository in case $(cat AUTHORS.md) get together and form a for-profit company to dominate the market for PDP-8/I clones.

Warren Young

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Jan 31, 2017, 1:23:54 PM1/31/17
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Taking Oscar's declaration of "no copyright" at face value, I've put the KiCad design files into the repository, along with the PDF version of the schematic produced by Tony Hill.

If these are later explicitly released under some open hardware or free culture type license, I'll update the COPYING.md file accordingly.

Oscar Vermeulen

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Jan 31, 2017, 3:18:00 PM1/31/17
to Warren Young, PiDP-8
Warren,

On 31 January 2017 at 19:23, Warren Young <tange...@gmail.com> wrote:

If these are later explicitly released under some open hardware or free culture type license, I'll update the COPYING.md file accordingly.

Why not put them on the same license that you added to your software distribution? That would certainly be fine by me - I don't naturally spend brain cycles on legal tidbits but it's probably good to clarify it's open source.

Kind regards,

Oscar


Warren Young

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Jan 31, 2017, 4:43:30 PM1/31/17
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On Tuesday, January 31, 2017 at 1:18:00 PM UTC-7, Obsolescence wrote:

On 31 January 2017 at 19:23, Warren Young wrote:

If these are later explicitly released under some open hardware or free culture type license, I'll update the COPYING.md file accordingly.

Why not put them on the same license that you added to your software distribution?

The main problem is that the SIMH license talks about "Software" only.
 
I don't naturally spend brain cycles on legal tidbits

Many software geeks fuss endlessly about licensing matters because legal systems are like any other intricate constructed system. They're fascinating and highly malleable, yet mired in history, just like computing systems. It's the same drive that pushes some to become [programming] language lawyers.

InMojo has a nice page summarizing the differences of your major choices. The first option they give -- the one they're calling the MIT license, even though it's been altered from what I call the MIT license -- is basically identical to the SIMH license, but modified to cover hardware as well.

Take a bit to think about the other considerations covered on that page, then let me know if you do in fact want to go with this modified MIT license.

it's probably good to clarify it's open source.

More than that, it lets people know what they're allowed to do with the design files. We don't all agree on what "open source" means, which is why we have so many different licenses to choose from.

Obsolescence

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Jan 31, 2017, 6:23:05 PM1/31/17
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Jens, Warren, all,


On Tuesday, January 31, 2017 at 2:57:29 PM UTC+1, Jens Andree wrote:
I've never seen the PiDP-8 (hw) as an Open Source project


Oh, it is! Open Source Hardware, but I just mentioned it on the introduction page of the web site, I never bothered with the legalese. 

The PiDP-8 was never intended to make money, I thought there'd be less than 100 people interested in something like this...
But in fact, about half a dozen people already made a local run of "budget PiDP's" on their own, and I don't mind at all - sent them the last Kicad version etc. 


If he makes it Open Source when it reaches end of life, or orders have completely stopped, then it's his choice. I for one prefer to every once in a blue moon order an actual complete kit and not just make all of them myself (including all the iterations for errors and stupid mistakes... ;) )

It's Open Source Hardware, no restrictions. After all, I got to use the code of simh and Bob Supnik told me he didn't want any donation or per-PiDP fee. Can't really do anything else then!

To be honest, there's not much of a financial reward in this. I actually made the calculation - I would have made more per hour in a junior position at McDonalds (a Swiss McDonalds, mind you, but still). 

So I'm completely OK with people using the PiDP stuff in whatever way they see fit. Admittedly, I'd be disappointed if anyone just starts offering a 1:1 copy of the PiDP-8, that's a bit of an unproductive effort, but I doubt anyone would feel it's a profitable way to spend their time. What I really hope is that people pick up the idea of adapting the (really quite generic) schematic and morph it into other front panel machines. Just, please, not a PDP-11 because I have 30.000 of the switches in my garage for when the PiDP-11 case is **finally** finished! 

But making a PCB and acrylic panel for a PDP-10, 12, 15 - if anyone feels like, it's not that hard. In Kicad, shove the LEDs to different places on the PCB, and hack simh. Which is the nice bit of the effort because you learn a lot about the original machine when bolting a physical front panel onto simh. I'd happy to supply the PiDP-8 switches (suit some 10s, the 15 and the 12 as well) at cost if anyone feels like having a go! 


So, Warren, yes, in your repository put the Creative Commons on it if the license used for the software does not apply. I don't really care. 

Kind regards,

Oscar.

Jonathan Trites

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Jan 31, 2017, 6:51:45 PM1/31/17
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Oscar, 

I know this may seem pedantic and annoying, and from your end it doesnt matter because you are the initial copyright holder. It matters more to our side because we are not always clear on what we can do with it without incurring possible legal problems, especially with international considerations . Holland in all likelihood has some differences from the United States for instance. 

In any case, spending a little time here to get the license you want makes all future questions answer themselves because we can refer to the license without wondering and bothering you with the question. And maybe the license terms contain things you havent thought about, like whether somene else can make commercial use of your work.

The minor issue with your last sentence  is that only you can "put the license on it" since you own it. Warren can't really do that.

Warren suggested one license. Creative Commons has several variations. Based on how I interpret your preferences based on the statements you made so far, the "Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)"  variant seems the closest. They have a two question form that helps you choose which variation you want here (https://creativecommons.org/choose/). 

Or else also look at Warren's suggestion and see what works for you.

(CC BY 

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Jonathan Trites

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Jan 31, 2017, 7:06:57 PM1/31/17
to Oscar Vermeulen, PiDP-8
Please make sure to reply all.


On Tue, Jan 31, 2017 at 5:05 PM Oscar Vermeulen <vermeul...@gmail.com> wrote:
Jonathan,

You're right about that - in the US, you spend 7% of GDP on legal matters... whilst in Yurp we were very successful in wasting our GDP in other, but equally senseless, ways.

I took the 2-question Creative Commons test. So I then put all the PiDP hardware, artwork and everything under the "Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International" license. That supercedes any previous, less precise description. 

Done!

Kind regards,

Oscar.

Warren Young

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Jan 31, 2017, 7:33:04 PM1/31/17
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On Tuesday, January 31, 2017 at 4:23:05 PM UTC-7, Obsolescence wrote:

I'd be disappointed if anyone just starts offering a 1:1 copy of the PiDP-8, that's a bit of an unproductive effort

That's exactly how I felt when I ran my own electronics parts & PCBs business. It started before Open Hardware took off so I never bothered with explicit licensing, but the spirit was the same.
 
I doubt anyone would feel it's a profitable way to spend their time.

I think you'll be surprised. More people want "point, click, buy" than want a Project.

I predict that not only will you get more people making exact duplicates of this design, they'll then come to you asking for help building and debugging it, and never mind that they already decided to cut you out of part of your just rewards for bothering to do that.

I'm not saying that the profit is the only reason to help people. (Else, why am I doing the PiDP-8/I software now?) It just rubs me the wrong way when there's a way to support the project, but people deliberately choose to save a few bucks to avoid doing so, but then want all the docs and support and such.

Which is why I won't be buying any Banana Pi or Orange Pi boards.

ODROID C2, now, that's different. Don't ask me how, it just is. :)
 
Just, please, not a PDP-11 because I have 30.000 of the switches in my garage for when the PiDP-11 case is **finally** finished! 

That was exactly the idea behind my observation that Open Hardware is fine once you've got the business established and a brand built up, but while bootstrapping a business or even a new product, there needs to be a period of exclusivity where you can recoup costs at least.

Open Software is different because the hard costs are things you probably own or rent already (a computer, an Internet connection, a spare bedroom for an office, etc.) The only other cost going into it is time, which you're spending from your pool of "free" time.

You can't treat Open Hardware exactly the same way.
 
So, Warren, yes, in your repository put the Creative Commons on it if the license used for the software does not apply. I don't really care. 

Creative Commons has some points to recommend it, but if you don't care, then I'd suggest the modified MIT license as given on the InMojo page, since it's basically the SIMH license, which we've all already agreed to.

EDIT: But now I see that you've already gone CC, so that's how I'll do it.

Obsolescence

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Jan 31, 2017, 7:34:33 PM1/31/17
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Indeed. So:

Warren Young

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Jan 31, 2017, 7:56:02 PM1/31/17
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On Tuesday, January 31, 2017 at 5:34:33 PM UTC-7, Obsolescence wrote:

I took the 2-question Creative Commons test. So I then put all the PiDP hardware, artwork and everything under the "Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International" license. That supercedes any previous, less precise description. 

It is done

Jens Andree

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Jan 31, 2017, 9:12:10 PM1/31/17
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I had missed that you, Oscar, had posted the CAD files both here and on your website - but I must say you've been exemplary in executing this project and without your kits our PiDP-8 would have been way less attractive to look at!
I would however urge you to apply some sort of creative commons open source license or similar in order to ensure that there is minimal fragmentation for future users - a way for future alterations to be documented etc.

The best thing about open source is the way a project can transform into excellent things! The worst part about open source without control is that you have no clue what version you're running, and if any bugfixes have been applied or not - simply because the lack of management. That's why I put all of my own open source projects on GitHub because then you have a chance to track forks and changes, and so can every user as well.

After receiving one of your early PiDP-8 kits I have started to look at other kits as well because it was a 100% hassle-free assembly and a really professional enclosure!
I would never have gone through all the iterations to create the front face like you did and it is partly why PiDP-8 has become so popular - and so will PiDP-11 be as well.

Lastly I hope you have made some money on the PiDP-8 Oscar. You must've spent hundreds upon hundreds of hours on this and please make sure you get something back for this!
I will happily pay a bit extra for all of your work if I knew you got something back for all of your time. :) 
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