Everyday Open Source

Everyday Open Source
Photo by Claudio Schwarz / Unsplash

👋 Hi there! You probably came here from seeing one of my daily Everyday Open Source posts. This page is here to explain a bit of what I'm up to.

Everyday Open Source is a project to stop and think about how major innovations came to be throughout history. How they probably had that playground energy of delight when building a fort, or collaborating on building something together. How ownership of ideas was the furthest thing from the minds of those creating, inventing, problem solving. Of course this isn't always the case, and some of these technologies were created with IP protections and economic motives, the thing that is the same about all of them is that when you look at them, they're just good ideas, basic enough that you can copy them by looking at them.

From screws and nails to semiconductors, so many of our technologies are openly shared, improved upon and given freely across humanity. For me an open source idea is an idea that you can clearly see how it works, and with a bit of experimentation and testing you can refine and hone that idea for yourself. These are ideas that are so good, you can't help but attempting to copy them and apply them to problems you see.

The idea in each post is likely something that was invented by some human at some point in history, and it was such a good idea that we don't necessarily even keep track of who was the inventor or creator of the idea. Sometimes we do sure, but who invented the nail, or the wheel, or the lever? What are ideas that are so good, and so beneficial to humanity that they can't be locked up with IP protections? What ideas are so astoundingly good that anyone should have access to them because they are self-documenting? The plow, walls, nails, screws, wind mills, pipes, electricity, semiconductors, the bow and arrow, aerodynamic wings, engines and more!

This started in the newsletter of my consulting group over at The Spore and I've built this series of posts to raise awareness of how the concept of open source, and open idea exchange is an intrinsically human behavior. It is natural to share, to improve, to riff, to remix. It is unnatural to IP protect, to withhold, to to hide good ideas.

What are open source ideas that can save us from the risks of climate change, can improve our lives, can enhance our communities? What are the stupidly simple 3D printables, or metalworking, or crafting ideas that have made things better in your work or life?

What are open source objects, behaviors, ideas you see in your community?

Share them with me on BlueSky, Mastodon, Twitter or LinkedIn with the hashtag #EverydayOpenSource

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