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  • @Ollie I'm not sure - there are a lot of 'clone'-style boards in there with small userbases - it's possible they are DIY things, but Linux/Pi did come relatively high up there if I recall.

    @CanyonCasa it's actually hard to get decent sales stats as they fluctuate so much (I only see when distributors place an order). Something like Puck.js, sold at 20-off sells for roughly twice what it costs me to make it and get it into the UK - but that's assuming I'm working for free.

    With Puck.js getting released I'm doing ok in Jan/Feb, but before that I was earning about enough to pay myself minimum wage off Espruino sales - luckily the KickStarters help to top that up to a 'normal' salary, but I'd be earning a lot more and working less if I got a normal job.

    I work a 50 hour week on average - I'm not sure quite how much of that is dev work, but maybe 30% average - obviously it goes up around a new release and then dies down a little after. The vast majority is just email answering.

    Honestly, my advice to anyone looking at doing an Open Source hardware project with a large Open Source software element is: don't. It's a really bad idea.

    Others I have spoken to doing similar things appear to have the same issues as me.

    OSHW seems to work great as a business - but when you're selling hardware because of your Open Source software you're entirely reliant on people being nice, supporting you, and not just copying your stuff - and that's not a great way to run a business.

    Even if people want to license your software, it's very hard to come up with a fair arrangement because any of their competitors could use the software for free...

    So yeah, sorry to be the bringer of bad news, but that's my take on it at the moment. If you're just selling hardware and doing a little bit of software, I'd whole-heartedly recommend it though - just keep the value in your hardware, not in the software that runs on it.


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