Open Source, Green Economy and Arduino

As we all know, Arduino is a project based on the Open Source license form, that is a license that allows everyone to start from what is given (let’s say the Arduino hardware and Software) and go ahead making their own project, provided that they mention the primary source, that is, Arduino.

In a very brief paragraph that is what Open Source is about.

 

This, of course, becomes part of the Sharing Economy: I have studied, developed, designed a platform, Arduino, and you can benefit from it, not only using it as it is, but changing it, evolving ti, bending it to your own needs. It’s like sharing a house via AirBnb and letting you use it as long as you asked for it and then you return it to me, in this case it’s sharing for a limited time something that must be returned join good conditions, in the case of Arduino is sharing the knowledge base that allowed Arduino to be Arduino and doing whatever you like with it, like developing the brains for your drone or for your prosthetics or for your garden watering system.

 

Arduino started as a shared project and went on as such: the community has contributed in many ways to the development and to the improvement of the initial board, and to the ideation of the boards that came later into being, thanks to our engineers but also to the requests and contributions of the community.

 

Many projects have been developed by makers in the community: arduino.org produces the boards and software, but it doesn’t make custom boards for specific projects, these are usually customized by the single makers (or companies) to fit their needs.

 

Shared economy contributes to the Green Economy in the sense that it’s not necessary to waste more time and resources to re-do something that is already available and made possible to reuse, but also in the sense that this sharing and availability has stimulated many makers in creating their projects that do contribute to the bettering of environment, or its preservation.

 

Examples of green economy related projects can be found everywhere on the web, as, once again, makers want to share their knowledge and projects and usually make them public, keeping the Open Source philosophy also for their projects.

 

As an example, see here: a motion sensor steered by an Arduino board that helps you save energy, therefore save the planet, switching the lights off whenever you leave a room:

 

http://arduinotronics.blogspot.it/2015/04/earth-day-have-your-lights-turn-off.html

 

 

Another typical example of how Arduino has helped, not only via the shared knowledge base, but also thanks to the efforts of the community helping it develop and sharing their projects and adding to that knowledge base, is quite often found in different forms on the web: an intelligent watering system (there are hundreds of free projects out there, I just selected one as an example). It is intellinget in the fact that, when you’re absent (or simply tot lazy to water your garden and/or balcony plants), it senses soil humidity in order to determine wether the plants need to be watered or not, avoiding the waste of water, therefore natural resources, of traditional watering systems that only use a timer to water plants at given times: 

 

http://www.instructables.com/id/Automatic-Plant-Watering-and-Soil-Moisture-Sensing/

 

A green project for the laziest ones, or simply those who don’t have the time or the physical strength to mown their grass, is an Open Source solar powered, Arduino controlled, lawn mower system, described in the detail here:

 

http://www.open-electronics.org/a-robotic-lawn-mowers-powered-by-solar-energy-with-an-arduino-heart/

 

 

by Silvia Bianchi

 

 

 

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