October 10, 2012 AT 10:53 am

“Respects Your Freedom hardware product certification”

Ryf
Respects Your Freedom hardware product certification. The FSF now will certify your hardware.

The “Respects Your Freedom” computer hardware product certification program encourages the creation and sale of hardware that will do as much as possible to respect your freedom and your privacy, and will ensure that you have control over your device.

Here are the requirements. It looks like if you use Eagle you can’t be certified, it’s a little unclear if you can use Mac or Windows to make the open hardware even if you use free tools, we’re going to check out the list of requirements.

Here’s an interesting requirement…

…the seller must talk about “free software” more prominently than “open source.

FSF & hardware seems to be diverging (or converging?) from past statements by FSF’s Richard Stallman.

Because copying hardware is so hard, the question of whether we’re allowed to do it is not vitally important. I see no social imperative for free hardware designs like the imperative for free software – Richard Stallman — On “Free Hardware”


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3 Comments

  1. I’m not sure I follow how Eagle would break the requirements in a hardware scenario. Eagle is not software that you’d steer a user of a hardware product towards. Eagle is not needed to USE a hardware product. You only need it if you want to make a copy of the hardware itself.

    Particularly in light of the fact that they make exceptions for non-free software for stuff like FPGA gate patterns, it seems like a hardware circuit designed in Eagle should be fine.

  2. Royce: By that logic then using Alitum Designer or (shoot me now) Cadence should be ok.

    I’m more put off by the “bounty for voilations” and the “free software” vs. “open source” (lets not even talk about the GNU/Linux BS).

    It almost seems that since BSD and GPL licensed stuff has hit mainstream the FSF has decided they need to push harder.

  3. An FSF guy left a comment over at Hack-A-Day that clinches it, I think. No requirements on hardware design files. You don’t even have to provide them at all.

    http://hackaday.com/2012/10/10/free-software-foundation-certifies-hardware-that-respects-your-freedom/comment-page-1/#comment-813424

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