The Open Source Hardware Association (OSHWA) is looking for a Program Coordinator to assist with a new program designed to engage open hardware in academia. The new program will give grants to academics to document the process of creating successful open hardware projects in academia. The Program Coordinator will be responsible for assisting in building out the program, managing the day-to-day deadlines of grantees, answering questions, scheduling meetings, and generally facilitating the development of the network. Ideal candidates will have an understanding of academic operations, typical academic outputs, budgets, and open source hardware. However, candidates do not need to be situated in academia.
OSHWA is a steward to the community of people who create, study, and use open source hardware. Open source hardware is hardware whose intellectual property is open rather than closed, i.e. patented. OSHWA is a US based 501(c)3 non-profit. OSHWA aims to foster technological knowledge and encourage research that is accessible, collaborative and respects user freedom.
OSHWA believes that the open source hardware community is strengthened by its diversity and, as such, encourages people of color, women, the LGBTQIA+ community, persons with disabilities, and people at intersections of these identities, from across the spectrum of disciplines and methods, to apply for this position.
I’ve been following the development of KiCAD for a number of years now, and using it as my main electronics CAD package daily for a the last six years or thereabouts, so the release of KiCAD 6.0 is quite exciting to an electronics nerd like me. The release date had been pushed out a bit, as this is such a huge update, and has taken a little longer than anticipated. But, it was finally tagged and pushed out to distribution on Christmas day, with some much deserved fanfare in the usual places.
So now is a good time to look at which features are new in KiCAD 6.0 — actually 6.0.1 is the current release at time of writing due to some bugfixes — and which features originally planned for 6.0 are now being postponed to the 7.0 roadmap and beyond.
The USB-C standard with its smaller connector has so far mostly escaped this trend, though this might be about to change thanks to the work of [Sam Ettinger]. His own description of his USB-C connector using a flexible PCB and a BGA-packaged ATTiny84A microcontroller is “cursed”, but we can’t decide whether or not it should also be called “genius”.
Key to this inspired piece of connector fabrication is the realization that the thickness of BGA and flex PCB together comes to the required 0.7 mm. The BGA provides the necessary stiffness, and though it’s a one-sided connector it fits the space perfectly. There are several demo boards as proofs-of-concept, and the whole lot can be found in a GitHub repository.