Open Source Development of Tangible Products

DS 71: Proceedings of NordDesign 2012, the 9th NordDesign conference, Aarlborg University, Denmark. 22-24.08.2012

Year: 2012
Editor: Assoc. Prof. Poul Kyvsgaard Hansen, Professor John Rasmussen, Assoc. Prof. Kaj A. Jřrgensen, Assoc. Prof. Christian Tollestrup
Author: Fjeldsted, Asta; Adalsteinsdottir, Gudrun; Howard, Thomas J.; McAloone, Tim
Series: NordDESIGN
Institution: 1: Aalborg University, Denmark; 2: Design Society, United Kingdom
ISBN: 978-87-91831-51-5


This article’s objective is to set up some foundational theory and practices for Open Source Development (OSD) of tangible products, a novel and emerging approach derived from the well-known open source software movement. As a contribution to the first steps of research in this discipline a clear definition for OSD is proposed and used to describe the key elements of a suggested OSD Process model. Several case studies are analysed to create an Archetypal Business Model characterising OSD of tangible products and the possibilities and delimitations within. Furthermore, strategic tools are suggested for companies that wish to explore the potentials OSD brings which form a so called OSD Method. The result of the method is the OSD Strategy and implementation thereof. This is done with the objective of determining the potential profitability that lies within OSD of tangible products and how companies can utilise this new approach to improve their business models and capture value in innovative ways.

Keywords: Open Source Development, Open Design, Open Source Hardware, Platforms, Business Models, Communities


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