Discussion group for ArduPlane users

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  • Chris, can you just clarify?  "3DR creates the hardware" That sounds like the hardware is not opensource, is that right? Are the schematics for the boards available and free for people to fab on their own (as ardiuno is?) or would that be an copyright (or other) infringement of 3DR?


  • @Chris

    Thank you Chris for clarifications, I hope you place these in some of the documentation indeed it was confusing. 

    However there are things you are not aware of: If you buy an assembled kit of any kind from any of the stores you discover that they load the OLD versions of the software. If you load the newer version of the software they no longer support their own products, citing THIS IS NOT WHAT WE SOLD YOU, not our responsibility.

    Also there is almost no support, as in tech support from the stores, and I do not wish to mention specific names. 

    Example: Myself and few others purchase DX8 Spektrum handheld RC and we do not know which modes are mapped to which switches on the handheld. Am I the only person, no there are others who waste gobs of time with these little details. I wrote to the store who sold me the spektrum, no response. Because they do not know themselves. 

    So I gave up and planning to retain two university of Toronto students to assemble and repair and fly the ardu machines. In other words, I need to establish  my own support.

    As it stands today, given my limited experience with the arducopter and the stores here, there is very little support. 

    Q: Is this the responsiblity of this BLOG to do tech support?

    A: No. There is no legal or ethical liabilities for DIYDRONES. But in the beginnings I was confused and asked you some questions if you recall.

    At this impasse we need a new solution to support the machines. This statement should not be read as a critical view, it is a fact, I need to find out how to address support, and challenge for others like me. This however does not make the products here inferior. 


  • "wave/particle duality" of Open Source Hardware. 

    Chris, is this your own description? If so trademark it!
  • 3D Robotics

    Guys: I think that, despite some heated words and unfortunate deviations from our site policies (Civility first -- no personal attacks), this has been a constructive dialog where many good points have been raised, which I/we will take to heart.  A few facts/clarifications:

    I agree that the DIY Drones/3D Robotics distinctions have become blurred and we need to clarify them. Part of this is due to having outgrown some organizational models that were okay in the early days but aren't anymore, and part of this is due to the implicit "wave/particle duality" of Open Source Hardware. 

    There are two distinctions that matter most here:

    1. DIY Drones is a non-profit community. 3D Robotics is a for-profit company
    2. The DIY Drones community creates the software, which is free. 3D Robotics creates the hardware, which is sold.

    As for the first, we're just finishing a branding process that will give all the 3D Robotics stuff (including the store and packaging) its own logo. Here's a glimpse of that: 


    As for the second, the nature of open source hardware makes the tech support function unavoidably distributed. 3D Robotics has two full-time professionals who do hardware support (email them at help@3drobotics.com). But 3D Robotics didn't write the software, the DIY Drones dev teams did, so the software support needs to be done here, in these forums, by the community itself.

    I realize this is confusing for many people -- do I have a hardware problem or a software problem? -- but I'm not sure how to do it differently. These fuzzy boundaries are built in the very nature of open source hardware, and all of the other open source hardware projects, from Arduino to Makerbot, wrestle with the same domain issues.

    But just as was the case in open source software, the "how best to support free software?" issue has created a business opportunity for companies to come in to offer support and systems integration services. So firms like jDrones and uDrones and the many great distributors such as buildyourowndrone in the UK have risen to offer end-to-end support, bridging the hardware/software divide.  

    Over time, I hope our community will create more opportunities for our smart members to scratch their entrepreneurial itch in this way, which seems like a win for everyone involved. 

  • @Brian Linger

    Thank you Brian, feel free to voice your concerns, whether I understand them or believe in them or not, I back you up against any bullying. 

    I stay this year and build 3 operational ardu machines and learn how to fly and train fliers. 

    Based upon this experience I will decide to stay or leave in 2013. 

    I have met great people here and I am indebted to them, however I feel hampered and weakened by few who pretend to be the gatekeepers here.

    There are no gates, there are no gatekeepers.

    I also do not appreciate people telling you "...could not care less if you stayed or left", this is an unethical language. 

    I also do not appreciate people harrassing me for days after a post, which I repeatedly clarified. 

    I do not mind paying for professional support, a monthly fee, to few talented developers to help out building better machines and software. This idea is not against the free spirit of OPEN SOURCE.

    I stop here and thank you and others for expressing opinions, our purpose is to better the products and services, and you I did not talk prior to this, so there is no gang up against anyone.

    My apologies to Chris Anderson, I know these discussions must be a bother. 


  • @Doug, "Brian tossing criticism at the open source community and assuming that the open source community and 3DR are the same thing"

    I am tossing constructive criticism at a "community" that has also chosen to become a business.  Where exactly did I insult the hundreds of million open source developers in the world?  Why do you feel that I combine the concept of Open Source and business any more than our patrons?  Have you read my statements with an open mind?  I am not offended at all, just curious, it would appear that you have missed the point entirely.

  • @Dara, I am sorry. I do see the direction that you are talking about; however there is a great community here to be found.  I have found dozens of people who are greatly helpful.  Don't give up over a few sycophantic types.  These people attacking me know haven't done the justice of reading my previous posts, or even speaking on the subjects I do.  They lash out.  Currently four of us putting together a new CF design are enjoying the reading.  Do be offended, just chuckle and keep trying.



  • @TD, not sure what your statement has to do with any of my statements?  I am well versed in the information you speak of.  I guess you may have missed my point?

  • @Mike Pursifull 

    Thank you Sir, I just want no bullies around. 

    My opinions are some correct and some iffy and some wrong, and there are issues with DIYDRONES and issues with the stores, none of these warrants bullying and scaring people off. 

    I have made a commitment to support 3 ardu machines and 2 paid university coops to fly and repair them. The monies are considerable.

    While I am asking for no help in terms of resources, I need to express my opinions FREELY those solely dealing with the technicalities and community processes here. 

    It is not possible that DIYDRONES is perfect, there is no room for any improvement, we need to make all efforts, all of us, to contribute and address the issues. 

    My gratitude to Chris Anderson and Jason and the rest of the developers and supporters. 


  • Moderator

    All very valid, interesting points. It distresses me when someone is vocal about their sense of entitlement, clearly not appreciating the organizing principles of the community.  And there are the separate roles of the core contributors, the online community, the commercial stores who, through scaling, put their resources at risk to let a wider audience participate more easily, etc.

    However, there is no place for personal attacks. Not because personal attacks cannot be tolerated, or because free speech should be censored, but because the community has a set of published standards.

    Two of the eleven "rules" cover this as explicitly as can be stated: http://diydrones.com/profiles/blog/show?id=705844:BlogPost:17789

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