16 February 2015

Link Dump 6

  • Patent pools offer open source a new incentive--and a new source of power by +Andy Oram: t's been talked about for years, and now there are well-endowed and well-researched organizations claiming to offer open source software some protection from patent lawsuits. The very announcement of these efforts--even before they have a chance to prove successful--are an historical watershed for open source and free software. For the first time you get back something tangible for open-sourcing. And this leads to another key change in the terrain: it now becomes critical how "open source" is defined, and who has the power to define it.
  • The Law School Scam by +Paul Campos :For-profit law schools are a capitalist dream of privatized profits and socialized losses. But for their debt-saddled, no-job-prospect graduates, they can be a nightmare.
  • Mechanical properties of components fabricated with open-source 3-D printers under realistic environmental conditions by +Joshua Pearce: In order for RepRap printed parts to be useful for engineering applications the mechanical properties of printed parts must be known. This study quantifies the basic tensile strength and elastic modulus of printed components using realistic environmental conditions for standard users of a selection of open-source 3-D printers...It is clear from these results that parts printed from tuned, low-cost, open-source RepRap 3-D printers can be considered as mechanically functional in tensile applications as those from commercial vendors.
  • Unusual Locomotion:  The wheel, invented by the Sumerians (in modern Iraq) 3000 BC, represented the most important advances in transportation. When you know that 80% of human activities for transport, we guess its importance. Wheels, tracks, screws, walking, crawling are used to move land vehicles. During the 50's to 70's, golden age of mobility studies, Mr. M.G. Bekker became the theoretician of land and lunar off-road locomotion and frame articulated vehicles, which move forward consistently through their joints for a long length of contact with the ground. Where the terrain falls away, the other modules take over. It was subsequently found that the benefits of such structures (and disadvantages) were not worth the extra cost of the vehicle.
  • What owning your personal cloud means for the open source movement by +Kenton Varda: The real motivation for Sandstorm is, and always has been, making it possible for open source and indie developers to build successful web apps... In order for low-budget software to succeed, and in order for open source to make any sense at all, users must be able to run their own instances of the software, at no cost to the developer...But today, personal hosting is only accessible to those with the time, money, and expertise necessary to maintain a server. Even most techies don't bother, because it's a pain. Sandstorm exists to fix that, making personal hosting easily accessible to everyone.
  • Solar Powered Mosquito Repellant +Tom Kruer: This solution was chosen as the winner of the InnoCentive Challenge entitled "Reducing the Risk of Malaria with a Solar Powered Device"...A prototype of this solution will be built and tested by SunNight Solar.  If it is effective, SunNight Solar expects to begin production as early as this Spring
  • Recommendations and Report of the Task Force On US Drone Policy (pdf) by +Stimson Center: While the overseas use of UAVs for intelligence, reconnaissance, transport and close air support has been largely uncontroversial, the growing use of lethal UAVs for targeted counterterrorism strikes away from so-called “hot battlefields” has generated substantial attention and criticism

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