Digital infrastructure for Fab Cities, regions and nation
Software stack aiming to offer modular and highly customizable components that each Fab City, Fab Lab and like-minded organizations can adopt, activate and configure based on their own needs. The challenges we are tackling involve different aspects, like:
- accelerating the growth of the network by facilitating the onboarding process
- reducing the needed technical knowledge
- ensuring compatibility, coherence and scalability by promoting the same data exchange standards, protocols, principles and frameworks
- offering community support and further development along the way
Fab City OS Installer
As the starting point component, the Installer will assist in managing each software component deployment lifecycle. It will incorporate a wizard to ease (de)installation and deployment management of components and will provide a substrate to test complex interactions such as multi-city scenarios, backup and restore scenarios, backwards compatibility.
Fab City OS Core
The component refers to a collection of tools designed to promote, assist and incentivize distributed and collaborative practices, offering an implementation of fair and equitable compensation schemes, throughout the whole design and manufacturing lifecycle.
It leverages crypto technology to empower participants with privacy, transparency and data ownership. Most importantly, the lifecycle of each asset can be expressed in a blockchain-anchored Digital Product Passport, enabling the verification of the asset’s history on the platform or by third parties.
Fab City OS Suite
This component aims to provide the users (both new Fab Cities and also members/labs within a Fab City) with a simple system to set up their own website using established open source workflows and using a given, consistent Fab City design template. The solution will not lock them in and will allow them to easily move on to a different/more complex system in the future.
The Suite is based on the Astro static site generation and adds to the features list a number of custom elements that take into consideration specific needs a Fab City may have, like knowledge management hub for publishing and sharing information and the map of its members and events.
FabAccess provides a resource access control system, enabling FabLabs to deny or allow access to the machines and tools in the labs only to authorized persons. It is envisioned that functions FabAccess provide are essential for all the labs and spaces equipped with machines like milling machines, cutters and all the other tools that require safety courses before being handled. Further developing the system to support an online protocol such as HTTPS opens new opportunities in terms of collecting data about resources used in the production flow, while applying the Zenroom technology stack, guarantees at the same time data sovereignty and protection for all stakeholders.
Open Source Hardware Toolchain
The OSH tools are a collection of tools that assist in two areas: the automation and standardization of producing documentation and the creation of an initial standardized associated metadata structure required for searching and filtering Open Source Hardware projects in a consistent fashion.
The individual tools are:
- OSH Automated Documentation
- OSH Tool
- KiCad Text Injector
- KiCad Image Injector
The Build Workshops
‘Building for all’ was a three-month free workshop series on sustainability, open-source principles and production techniques. The hands-on workshops tested and explored the possibilities of local and open production in Hamburg, a wide variety of products and prototypes being manufactured and assembled in Hamburg’s open workspaces (Fab Labs) using open-source hardware documentation and guidance from workshop trainers.
The build instructions for each of the prototypes exhibited at #tfom23 were documented in detail with an open-source license, which entitles anyone worldwide to rebuild the prototype and freely redesign it according to local requirements like taste, size or functionality.
Furthermore, the projects served as use cases mapping and simulating the manufacturing process, mapped within the Fab City OS Core, collaborative platform.