Thoughts on OKfest 2012

Posted Saturday 14 June 2014 by Urs Riggenbach.

I stumbled over this blog post that made me think about a pretty hillarious moment at OKFest 2012, my first time in Finland.

An illustration of the potential difference between centralised and decentralised development at the infrastructure level was offered by Urs Riggenbach of Solar Fire, who described the development of open source hardware for small-scale hydro-electric power generation. Urs argued that, rather than massive cost large-scale Dams projects, with their visible ecological impacts, potential to displace communities, and scope for corruption in their contracting arrangements, communities could make use of Intellectual Property free designs to construct their own small-scale solutions.

Tim Davies, www.timdavies.org.uk

It was in a panel representing the “open development” efforts done by the World Bank, Os and NGOs. As Tim Davies points out in his blog, open development and open knowledge as framed by the Open Knowledge Fondation strongly focusses on data as in statustics, exluding other knowledge that’s open such as open tools for change: Open hardware, openly accessible knowledge, construction plans, etc.

For me, open development means to work on solutions for positive change ("development") and at the same time "open" up the tools for this change so that others can do the same.


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