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Re: Decision taken


On Thu, Sep 29, 2011 at 8:44 PM, Dick Hollenbeck <dick@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> The gEDA project will not take this lying down.  I suggest we give serious attention soon
> to writing conversion programs from all of their formats.  It's weird having to think
> about competing here.  But I have been playing this game in the software private sector
> for 30 years, and know that being able to provide a conversion path for datafiles from the
> competing tool into yours is critical to gaining market share.

I don't like to think of this as competition. We just need a tool (at
least one) that will be on par with non-open tools in terms of
features and quality. Hopefully many of the things we develop can be
used by gEDA and viceversa. The concept of competition applies well to
situations where you're figting for a scarce resource, much less so
here, I think. The foss-pcb mailing list embodies this quite well. You
have people from Kicad, gEDA and others discussing what's good for a
FOSS PCB design tool. My guess is that both Kicad and gEDA have/will
soon have so many contributors that the limiting factor will be how to
coordinate things. So they will not be competing for developers. What
else could they be competing for?

> These conversion tools could be external, and written in a language of your choice.

This is a perfect example of things that should be done in
collaboration with the gEDA people.

Now, I would like to give some context:

- We are not "CERN" but a part of it (the ones pushing for Open Source
Hardware). CERN is very big. There will be people who stay with
non-open tools. Hopefully with time their case will become less
- I would really like the foss-pcb list to remain this neutral meeting
place for all sorts of FOSS PCB tool developers. Whoever is interested
in this broader context can find more information here:
- We are very willing to play first domino and this is in fact already
happening. People from the Facebook Open Compute project and others
are in contact with us to collaborate on this. I hope the Open
Hardware workshop next week can be used to discuss with some key
actors and come up with a good plan. BTW, if someone wants to attend,
registration closes today! See
- For the time being, I have asked a company
(http://www.signalsoftware.es/) to turn the feature wish list in the
foss-pcb pages into a work package list for Kicad, so that people who
want to lend a hand and don't know where have a list of work packages
to choose from. I will of course make sure whatever is done by us or
our collaborators is contributed in the standard way, respecting all
the non-written rules of FOSS.

I look forward to collaborating with everyone in this list. Cheers!


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