This post in the inspiration series focuses on inspiring people and what they do that is inspiring. Previous posts in this series focussed on the inspirational project or presentation, rather than who is inspiring.
Inspires because he has shared many interesting projects, such as “The Quub is an open-source microcontroller system based on tiny “core processor” boards, a system of addressable daughter boards, and provision for simple networking. ”
He also has an extensive interest in nature photography, he travels and lives in his own design and build mobile home – now at generation 2 and also because his “entire web site is archived by the National Library of Australia as a “publication of national significance”.
Rob provides an excellent example of sharing and community building through his web site and extensive essays, tutorials, FAQs, diaries and publications.
He does most of this while living on the road in remote “outback” Australia!
Inspires because he is taking a pioneering role in open sourcing his projects, crowd sourcing the project design, development and maintenance, and is also placing large portions of his business processes and web site setup into public domain as well and even seeking community input on pricing.
His the projects extremely useful, very adaptable and are continuously being used for new purposes and enhanced, and he is really successful at targeting a low price, including shipping that is very attractive to users.
Explore the site – there is everything from open part lists (BOM) and links to easy purchase shopping carts, to extensive documentation and extremely good information on designing, making and especially manufacturing. The forums are extremely active and very helpful. The Dangerous Prototypes community even proposes and designs some projects almost independently of Ian who has even funded some of the PCB prototypes.
If you don’t have the technical knowledge of those listed above, then check out Ian Lesnet’s Dangerous Prototypes site, or Adafruit, Sparkfun, ePanaroma, etc. Do keep coming back here as the Wiki will be collating many resources to help you get started, or continue your journey.
You don’t have to design any electronics to create a working circuit! You can use electronic building blocks and some code to make it do what you want! There are plenty of code examples to get you started. You might even find an existing product or a kit that does what you want.
You can take many approaches from the use of pre-existing hardware and software building blocks, to modifying one item, or creating the entire system.
There are even groups, forums, sites and companies that are very supportive of of individuals and will manufacture and maybe sell your idea.
The people selected in this series of posts were chosen because they have completed and shared interesting work and encouraged others to use and modify it, and also because they provide alternate ideas to common mainstream approaches. I also have to admit personal bias, as two of them are fellow Australians and are a similar age to me, and I have purchased and built one project, want more, plus I have several of Ian Lesnet’s projects!
The inspirations from this and previous posts are being collated in the wiki, please view and considering contributing.