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Open Hardware and Digital Communications Conference On Free Video, If You Help

samzenpus posted about 6 months ago | from the put-some-money-in-the-box dept.

Open Source 15

Bruce Perens writes The TAPR Digital Communications Conference has been covered twice here and is a great meeting on leading-edge wireless technology, mostly done as Open Hardware and Open Source software. Free videos of the September 2014 presentations will be made available if you help via Kickstarter. For an idea of what's in them, see the Dayton Hamvention interviews covering Whitebox, our Open Hardware handheld software-defined radio transceiver, and Michael Ossman's HackRF, a programmable Open Hardware transceiver for wireless security exploration and other wireless research. Last year's TAPR DCC presentations are at the Ham Radio Now channel on Youtube.

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If you pay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47472835)

First! (Forgive me... I've never done that before.)

So, when the article's title about open stuff says "If you help", it's referring to "if you help via Kickstarter". In other words, someone's seeking our money.
Well, at least that's something novel and newsworthy.

Re:If you pay... (2)

Bruce Perens (3872) | about 6 months ago | (#47472847)

Yes. I put in $100, and I am asking other people to put in money to sponsor these programs so that everyone, including people who did not put in any money at all, can see them for free. If you look at the 150+ videos, you can see that Gary's pretty good at this (and he brought a really professional-seeming cameraman to Hamvention, too) and the programs are interesting. Even if at least four of them feature yours truly :-) He filmed every one of the talks at the TAPR DCC last year (and has filmed for the past 5 years) and it costs him about $8000 to drive there from North Carolina to Austin, Texas; to bring his equipment and to keep it maintained, to stay in a motel, to run a multi-camera shoot for every talk in the conference, and to get some fair compensation for his time in editing (and he does a really good job at that).

Re:If you pay... (1)

Bruce Perens (3872) | about 6 months ago | (#47472871)

If I remember correctly, it was 4 video channels last year: tracking on presenter, proscenium, audience, projector.

Re:If you pay... (1)

ledow (319597) | about 6 months ago | (#47473023)

Charge entry to the convention.

Re: If you pay... (2)

Bruce Perens (3872) | about 6 months ago | (#47473133)

We do charge entry to the convention. We get really nice facilities for the people who actually travel there and for the speakers. Last year's location was subperb. But I don't see why they should actually subsidize the folks who do not attend.

Re: If you pay... (2)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47473609)

But I don't see why they should actually subsidize the folks who do not attend.

If the goal is to disseminate information and improve the state of the art, then you should want to disseminate this information as well. If it isn't, why should anyone care?

Re: If you pay... (2)

Bruce Perens (3872) | about 6 months ago | (#47476117)


The last time I had a professional video produced, I paid $5000 for a one-minute commercial, and those were rock-bottom prices from hungry people who wanted it for their own portfolio. I doubt I could get that today. $8000 for the entire conference is really volunteer work on Gary's part.

Someone's got to pay for it. One alternative would be to get a corporate sponsor and give them a keynote, which is what so many conferences do, but that would be abandoning our editorial independence. Having Gary fund his own operation through Kickstarter without burdening the conference is what we're doing. We're really lucky we could get that.

Re:If you pay... (1)

Burz (138833) | about 6 months ago | (#47474075)

Are they addressing people's problems, or creating gadgets for elite techies? There is a huge ongoing crisis in personal computing because we have an Internet that (understandably) assumes endpoint security, but those points (PCs and mobile) are collections of black-box proprietary chips.

I have recommended running Qubes OS as a way to mitigate the security shortfall created by run-of-the-mill PCs and software, but that leaves us with the problem of trusting hardware designed and produced by a handful of large corporations who are increasingly willing to shaft their customers. Privacy and security are exchanged for maintaining a close relationship with the military-industrial complex (or police surveillance state, depending from which angle you prefer to view it).

In short, open PC hardware should be a priority for the open source community if not the IT industry as a whole. What are open hardware people doing about it?

Re:If you pay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47475875)

David Rowe spoke about making free mesh telephony in Dili, East Timor, where they only had telephony through expensive cell companies and a single call was the cost of a day's labor for most people.

This crowd are wireless researchers and radio hams, the security folks are elsewhere. My company is making a handheld wireless device and we understand the need to have open platforms that people can put their own OS on. But we haven't apporached the economies of scale necessary to make an inexpensive product for the common consumer - if we get to do that it's years away.

Re:If you pay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47472863)

They don't want help. Then they'd have to cooperate with people of disparate opinions and views. But donations! Money does what it's told: buy me stuff.

One hell of a slashvertisement! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47472909)

Stories here are for soliciting contributions to kickstarter programs now? It also doesnt specify how the videos will be licensed, if i pledge the $10 can i distribute them as soon as i get access?

Re:One hell of a slashvertisement! (2)

Bruce Perens (3872) | about 6 months ago | (#47472985)

I think TAPR's policy is that the presentations be freely redistributable, but I don't know what they and Gary have discussed. I am one of the speakers and have always made sure that my own talk would be freely redistributable. I wouldn't really want it to be modifiable except for translation and quotes, since it's a work of opinion. Nobody should get the right to modify the video in such a way as to make my opinion seem like it's anything other than what it is.

Re: One hell of a slashvertisement! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47473667)

The videos will be available on YouTube for free. I donated $25 last year and this year. I can't attend DCC; it's either that or GNU Radio Conference the week after, but at least the videos may be available.

Kixk in the ass (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47474311)

So let me see if I have this right:

Free videos of the September 2014 presentations from this Open Hardware and Open Source software conference will be made available - if you pony up some cash.

BTW - I'm giving away a Free Tesla model S to the first person to send me $256000.

it costs money to do things well (2)

bigmo (181402) | about 6 months ago | (#47475403)

I do video production and corporate event staging so I know how much it costs to do it well. If $8000 is what they need, I can tell you that it's a bargain basement price. I'm a little tired of trying to show people some great presentation on open source and then apologizing for a video that looks like it was done by a 5th grader. People see that and think it's just another adolescent geek doing a science fair project. I think we're all helped when work that is important to us is shown in a professional way. If this guy is willing to do it for that price, I'm going to the kickstarter page next to donate.

We are used to having big companies throw us freebies all the time. To them it's a drop in the bucket. When an individual or small group does something professional looking, it is a big expense for them. While we're all used to getting things for free on the internet, remember that there is still a price. We have to take what they feel like giving away and it may very well be a bunch of crap, put there for their purposes and not ours.

We can draw a line between sharing and charging money, cooperating and competing. All those things have a place and a time. We need to be able to look at the alternatives like adults. And we need to be willing to put our money where our mouth is.

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