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Appropedia:BFI prize submission/Proposed introduction
I noticed the entry still had about 400 words to spare, so I drafted this Introduction.
As Buckminster Fuller realized, the world is in need of “a design science revolution to make the world work for all.” We believe Bucky’s goal requires a new ‘science of design’ that allows everybody in the world to participate in the design process. A system that lets anybody work towards better, shared, open designs for the benefit of humanity.
Just as software design is being revolutionized by open-source code, product design is on the verge of being unshackled from its corporate chains. While there will always be product design and architecture that can be best done with assistance of big business, there is much the world needs that is not being done by these forces (the reasons for this are varied, including an unfamiliarity with the demographics involved, not seeing profit potential, etc.) Some of that slack can be taken up by people who are passionate about design, or the fields where they want to see design drive improvement – for us, that passion happens to lie in the design of “appropriate technologies,” for developing regions, but we ultimately see open design as a paradigm that will enrich design in all areas - household items, luxury products, architecture, transportation, etc.
Our passion is for helping humanity by the means of sharing technology to meet the basic needs of food, water, shelter, and health. Because of this, we look at the problem of shared design through the lens of appropriate technology. But we realize that the tools and methods we develop to share these designs will be applicable to countless other endeavors, and we want to make sure that the basic lessons we learn, and the platform we create, are shared with anybody else designing products for whatever goals they aspire towards. The open-source software community recognizes the benefits of the revision control offered by SourceForge.net, whether the software in question is for Linux, Mac, PC, or internet based, for personal finance, or for video games. Similarly, we hope our framework for sharing physical designs, their revisions, forks, etc. will inspire and enable collaborative innovation in all fields of human endeavor.
- Appropedia:BFI prize submission - main page for this application.