For those who couldn't make it along to OSHUG #9, Skills Matter kindly
recorded the event and the videos can be found at:
And registration for OSHUG #10 is now live.
OSHUG Event #10 — Open for Change (Radiation Monitoring in Japan, 40
Fires, Bristol Braille Technology)
On the 19th May 2011, 18:00 - 20:00 at Centre for Creative
Collaboration, 16 Acton Street, London, WV1X 9NG.
A great deal of open source hardware is built by engineers for
engineers, and comprises mostly electronics and/or computing
technology. Which is not at all surprising given the origins of the
movement and where we are on the adoption curve. However, a growing
number of projects are seeking to tackle ever more challenging
problems and working with an increasingly broader selection of
At the tenth OSHUG meeting we will be hearing about the efforts of
hackers in Japan to build their own open source radiation monitoring
infrastructure. We will learn about the work of 40 Fires, a foundation
that is building an open source hydrogen fuel cell electric car. And
we will hear from Bristol Braille Technology about the need for an
affordable refreshable Braille display, and the potential open source
- Open Source Radiation Monitoring in Japan
Hackers in Japan responded to recent nuclear plant radiation leaks by
setting up their own monitoring infrastructure. In this talk we will
take a look at some of the radiation monitoring devices they built,
the technology they used to share and make sense of the data and the
work that continues to be done.
Nick Weldin initiated the first public Arduino course in the UK in
2005, because he didn't want to program PIC chips on the accounts
computer at work after everyone else had gone home any more, and he
couldn't get his boss to send him to the Arduino course that was
running in Spain. When Tinker London started up he joined them and ran
courses teaching Arduino wherever anyone was interested. He continues
to run a course on Arduino, and is co-author of the recently released
- An open source approach to developing energy-efficient technology
Two years ago start-up company Riversimple unveiled a ground-breaking
vehicle that has the potential to transform the auto industry. The
Riversimple urban vehicle, due to be in production in 2014, is
lightweight, powered by hydrogen and capable of 300 mpg (energy
equivalent). As part of its strategy, Riversimple announced the
establishment of an independent open source foundation, 40 Fires, that
would make available the designs for the car on-line under an open
source license. Two years on, the 40 Fires team report on the joys,
trials and tribulations of working on a potentially game-changing
project in one of the world's biggest industries.
Patrick Andrews is project leader of the 40 Fires Foundation and a
board member of eco-car company Riversimple. A former corporate lawyer
with Kingfisher and Pratt & Whitney, he now spends his time pursuing
an interest in social innovation, with a particular focus on
alternative business models and governance structures.
- Developing a revolutionary, affordable Braille Cell Display
Braille usage has been shown to have a strong correlation with
employment—and by extension independence—amongst the blind. However
Braille usage is stagnating under a lack of technical innovation which
has left it hugely expensive and uncommon.
Bristol Braille Technology was founded on the 6th of January, 2011,
when the first meeting of interested professionals met to discuss the
need for more affordable refreshable Braille. We are currently
designing our first prototype cell display. Our aim is to make a
Braille cell display;that is a tactile 'screen' which connects to a
computing device—which, unlike the current models, is affordable to
the majority of blind individuals in the UK and, eventually, anywhere
around the world.
Ed Rogers is a Bristolian and recent graduate from the University of
the West of England where he studied Animation and Interactive Design.
During this course he first began to consider the issue of digital
Braille. After leaving university he continued to pursue the goal of
an affordable Braille cell display, eventually founding the
not-for-profit Community Interest Company, Bristol Braille Technology.
Note: Please aim to arrive for 18:00 - 18:20 as the event will start
at 18:30 prompt.
Not that many subscribers to this list would need such a thing for
themselves, but I wrote a brief OSHW intro for the April edition of RS
Components eTech magazine:
http://is.gd/M0gAqK (Note: it's a 5.5M PDF!)
Though, this may come in useful if someone asks what OSHW is, and some
of you may recognise the photographs from OSHUG meetings.