On Feb. 22, 2012, Marcin Jakubowski asked Mark Norton to facilitate the discussion around starting an OSE Car project and help with negotiations.
Feb. 22, 2012
I am working resolving some of the social aspects of the Car project. I'd like to communicated directly with Joe Justice. Do you have an email address for him?
It has very recently come to my attention that Joe Justice of WikiSpeed has expressed interest in working with OSE to produce an open source car design. You may recall Joe's TED talk on using Agile/SCRUM techniques to prototype a low cost car.
Frankly, this complicates things considerably. Joe is a strong leader and will have his own ideas on how this project should be managed. Also, while he has expressed interest, he hasn't put anywhere near the level of effort into participating that you have.
I have put together some of my views on this issue and posted it to the OSE Forum in http://forum.opensourceecology.org/discussion/657/2012-specs-for-open-source-car. I welcome your response there. Privately, I'd like to hear your thoughts on competition vs. cooperation. I think that if you want to pursue this as a competitive design effort, you'd have a good shot a winning - based our correspondence to date, the commitments you've made in your proposal, and your efforts to date.
There is, however, some attraction to a cooperative efforts. You'd be in a position to learn from what Joe accomplished in his earlier design efforts. Naturally, the reverse is true as well. A cooperative effort will be more difficult to manage, in my opinion, but those who participate may get more out of that approach. Kinentic Vehicles/Aerospace would still be in a good position to fabricate parts and assembly kits or whole cars at the conclusion of the design effort - if that is your motivation.
I welcome your input on this.
good to meet you Mark. go right ahead, let's do awesome together.
My name is Mark Norton and I am project leader with the Open Source Ecology project. As you know, we are trying to get an OSE Car project started and I understand that you've expressed interest in participating. I talked a bit with Khuong Dinh as well. Marcin has asked me to help coordinate the project kickoff and get things organized.
There are two main tasks facing us at this time: design criteria and structuring the design effort.
In order to establish reasonable expectations of the design and prototyping effort, I have started to collect a set of proposed design criteria. You can view an early draft of these as http://opensourceecology.org/wiki/Car/Design_Criteria. While OSE has high expectations for a very efficient car in the future, I've lowered the bar a bit for the first round of prototyping. My thought is that it will be difficult enough to design and built a truly open source car without worrying about advancing the state of the art as well. Please let me know what you think of these criteria. If there some that I am missing, please let me know.
The second has to do with structuring the early design effort. We could set this up as a design challenge and look for competitive proposals. Such competitions have been successful in other venues (X-Prize, etc.), but are wasteful when you look at the combined effort to reach the prototyping stage. A collaborative effort might be preferred, but OSE hasn't had much success with that approach to date. Awarding a project to an established expert and existing team has yielded better results in the past.
There is a question of who would lead a collaborative effort. You have demonstrated success in using Agile methods to design and build a car. However, Jack McCornack of Kinentic Vehicles has also demonstrated equally good results in leading a team to building a highly efficient car (the Mother Earth News MAX). If OSE determined that Jack was better suited to leading this project, would you be willing to participate under his direction? Jack, I have the same question for you - would you contribute under Joe's leadership? If leadership is not an issue, then we can proceed with the collaborative approach. If it is, then we will likely go down the competitive path.
Ultimately, what the world needs is a high quality, low cost, easy to build open source car. I think OSE has a framework in place that will foster the development of such a car. We also have the funds needed to support prototype development (within reason and the limits of the OSE budget).
I am open to all points of view and suggestions.
- Mark Norton
Feb. 23, 2012
sounds excellent. I'm a fan working under anyone (Jack is a great guy) or leading a group. The design_criteria you provided are a good start- they aren't exhaustive and I like that, they avoid being prescriptive and hit the most important points. I'd like to mention WIKISPEED may already have the car that meets this description, but it needs to be tested by OSE to verify fit or not with these Design Criteria, and then needs to be published so folks can start building it and enhancing the design. Also, we need a group to integrate power cubes into an engine module for testing (likely 2 cubes, stacked vertically if I understand the dimensions correctly).
I'd like to add Tom Griffing (product owner of the power cube) to this discussion because he will be the key component to the integration group.
Hello all - Tom Griffing here.
I had a good discussion with Khoung last night about the car, power cubes and such - all quite interesting.
With the goal of having an OSE car by the year's end in mind, I think buying a Wikispeed car would be a huge jump toward the OSE goals.
From my conversation with Khoung, the power plant is an obstacle for the Wikispeed folk and they would like to lower its cost. From an OSE perspective, we would like a power plant that would serve other OSE machines (ie: Power Cube). In its current configuration, the Power Cube provides hydraulic fluid power for various uses, but has shortcomings for use in a car. We have discussed "enhancements" to the Power Cube to overcome these shortcomings.
I don't think hydraulic fluid power is the best means for delivering power for a car - mostly for its inefficiencies.
Probably the single largest consideration for the OSE cars is power delivery:
- Direct mechanical power would provide the quickest means of getting a working car
- Electrical power would provide greater utility and modularity
The Wikispeed vehicle could also provide a jumpstart by delivering either a working car or a platform for developing an electrically driven vehicle. If funds are available, we should consider both, as most of the cost of the Wikispeed vehicle is in their engine.
I look forward to this development.
Pretty cool. I got the word from Nikolay yesterday...
On Thu, 23 Feb 2012 00:29:58 +0100, Nikolay Georgiev wrote > it seems that we will have the Awesome Team of Wikispeed joining in > > That's great news! > http://opensourceecology.org/wiki/Team_Wikispeed > > Best, > Nikolay ...and wrote back to him...
> Woohoo! It may be that my contribution to the OS Car project will only be > the lighting of the fire under my betters. I'll stay active. No matter which way the project goes (presuming it goes) the car needs specifications to meet, or it will be difficult to tell if the project succeeded.
After I've absorbed today's mail, I'll write a "reply all" to your message and we'll see where I best fit in. I'll have to say that Joe's and Marcin's management styles (and promotional styles) are better matched to each other than mine is to theirs, but that doesn't necessarily mean better balanced; perhaps some yin-and-yang is in order. I'll do more reading (including my X Prize competitor notes) and get back to you.
Feb. 24, 2012
Tom, likely the best method to get started is to form a team around assembling a WIKISPEED car in it's current version, in order to understand it deeply. And then updating modules at a time to make it even more compatible with other OSE parts. Here is a list of key steps for assembly, and tools needed, as used by our Texas team currently:
lling chassis chassis receive in mail or cut and weld on location. cut and weld on location requires bandsaw set to cut square, jig plates (can be mailed or CNC'd locally), speed square and accurate 48" tape measure with 1/16th" or smaller tick marks. If made on site, chassis must then be drilled, requires centering punch, hammer, centering 3/8ths drill bit and drill (drill press or coal drill preferred).
suspension module receive in mail or CNC on location.
compare to photos for test. NEED TO MAKE PHOTO OR RENDER
bolt on to car recieve grade 8, 3/8" bolts, washers, and lock nuts 9/16ths wrench and socket with ratchet required
compare to photos for test. NEED TO MAKE PHOTO OR RENDER
wheels and tires receive wheels with tires and lungnuts in mail (tirerack)
jack up chassis. set up car jack put wood block on car jack to avoid scratching frame.
bolt on wheels Lug wrench required
braking chassis pedal plate receive pedal plate in mail or CNC on location.
bolt pedal plate onto chassis recieve grade 8, 3/8" bolts, washers, and lock nuts
receive brake pedal in mail (willwood)
receive brake master cylinder in mail (willwood)
receive accelerator pedal in mail.
bolt pedals and master cylinder to pre-drilled holes on pedal plate. recieve grade 8, 1/4" bolts, washers, and lock nuts
Brake lines receive brake lines in the mail, pre-flared or flare on location if flaring on location, requires bubble flare tool, metric AND SAE brake line fittings.
bend lines to match diagram NEED TO MAKE DIAGRAM
receive brake line clips in the mail
attach clips to existing holes on pedal plate and chassis according to diagram NEED TO MAKE DIAGRAM NEED TO CAD BRAKE LINE CLIP LOCATIONS. NEED TO PICK BRAKE LINE CLIP SUPPLIER AND TEST.
screw on brake line fittings line/flare wrench required, SAE and Metric
Brake Fluid buy, locally, DOT3 brake fluid. CAUTIION: Brake fluid is one of the few seriously toxic fluids we deal with. Be careful, goggles and latex gloves are suggested.
fill brake fluid resevoir
bleed brakes. Requires brake bleeder kit or modified empty water bottle or 3/16th surgical tube.
Verify brake pressure Step on brake and verify rock-hard pedal before pedal is fully depressed. Have friends heave on the car and verify car slides before wheels rotate.
steering chassis Steering rack receive steering rack in the mail.
receive steering rack mounts in the mail or make locally with CNC.
bolt steering rack mounts to pedal plate. recieve grade 8, 3/8" bolts, washers, and lock nuts
bolt steering rack to steering rack mounts recieve grade 8, 3/8" bolts, washers, and lock nuts
receive tie rod extendors in the mail or tap locally from hexagonal bar stock. if tapping locally, need metric tap, I believe M14x1.5.
receive tie rods in the mail.
thread tie rods onto tie rod extendors.
thread tie rod extendors onto steering rack.
bolt tie rods to steering knuckles.
verify can heave on front wheel by hand and one wheel does not move at all without the opposite wheel moving.
Steering column. receive steering column in the mail.
receive interior module in mail or cut and weld locally. same tools required as making a chassis. STANDARDIZE STEERING COLUMN MOUNT IN INTERIOR MODULE
set interior module in chassis, and bolt in. recieve grade 8, 3/8" bolts, washers, and lock nuts
receive steering wheel in the mail. TEST OUR OWN CNC'D STEERING WHEEL.
slide steering column onto steering rack, tighten pinch bolt. metric socket set required.
attach steering column to interior module.
Bolt steering wheel to steering rack SAE socket set required
verify steering wheel turns both wheels without wobbling.
align wheels (professional alignment or local with speed square, plumb bob, and level).
body on body top mount frame receive body top mount frame in the mail
receive button-head hex bolts in mail.
bolt body top mount frame to car
receive body by freight.
set body onto body top mount frame.
bolt body on to body top mount frame with button-hread hex bolts.
push and shake body, verify does not flex, wobble, or make noise under force that would dent a fender on a new car.
dust and polish car body.
Feb. 26, 2012
I've been plugging away on specs, and on integrating the PowerCube to a lightweight automobile. I just now added my New Improved Specifications (Mark's Car/Design_Criteria page with my own enhancements added) to my proposal page at...
...and earlier in the week I used the 'discussion' page of that proposal for my research and conclusions re PowerCube in the OS Car (executive summary: It's a good idea that needs developing, 'cause with the current pump and off-the-shelf hydraulic motors, the engine-to-wheel power transmission efficiency will be a smidge under 50%) but I'm quite bullish on the concept, and though I don't think a PowerCube should be planned for the 2012 first prototype, I do think the prototype should be built to accommodate PowerCube drive with minimum modification. Success may be as close as a variable displacement pump and a bigger engine. I'm thinking Metro motor because they're everywhere and the bodies are rusted out, and though it would make a PowerCube you'd need two guys to lift, it provides a healthy fuel efficient 50 horses and there may be times a more powerful PowerCube option would be useful for the heavy equipment components of the GVCS 50...sorry, I'm drifting. Point is, while OS Car Prototype #1 is likely to need a conventional automotive powerplant (at least on the budget and schedule I've proposed) we should design it to fit a PowerCube later, when the conversion is ready.
Or we could make a prototype with a PowerCube just to show it can be done, though it'd maybe have a top speed of 50 mph and take a minute-plus to get there.
> I'd like to mention WIKISPEED may already have the car that meets this description
...and if so that'd sure be a time saver. Joe, if you'll send me a link to photos or specs of it, I swear I'll keep it secret until you're ready to reveal it. Man, you've got me curious.
I'm hoping for an answer mid-day Monday re if Mother Earth News will let me turn the MAX design over to OSE. Hey, no 'may' about it, MAX -does- already meet the description, but it's not fully mine to give away. However MEN's main goal is to promote their magazine, and a little blurb on the intro to the Final Release saying something like "the first prototype was built on behalf of Mother Earth News, motherearthnews.com" that would probably satisfy them. Bot please keep this to yourselves; there's one guy to go and if he says, "Naaa" I don't want to have jumped the gun.
However there are a few things about MAX that are not ideal. If that was a path OSE wanted to take, I'd think converting it to gasoline (yep, a Metro engine) would be a good move. For one thing, the Kubota diesel costs over four grand and with the Metro motor the total parts-and-materials bill drops to around $7000. For another, not every state will go for that Kubota engine in a newly built car.
Also, in 3+ years and 20,000+ miles of driving that thing, I've become convinced that more creature comforts are in order. I listed them in my proposal, but the main one is an enclosed cabin. MAX is not a suitable car for anybody but high mileage zealots until it gets a top and side windows. Not too hard to do, I don't think--it'd be a piece of cake for Joe and his crew--but I do think a roof is needed to make that car acceptable to the general public.
I've concluded that the three wheeler (even a tadpole, and even a tilter) is so poorly suited to the PowerCube that it's not worth bothering with. Four wheels are needed for space, and because the PowerCube's width and high CG would increase rollover risk for a trike.
As far as working under Joe goes, my problem is he has 40 folks already and I don't see where I have skills that they don't. I'd love to if I could help, but I don't really know what I have to bring to the table. I'm a decent aerodynamicist if you don't need higher tech than about 1950, but if the goal is to keep it slippery and slow (like under 300 mph), most of subsonic aerodynamics was well understood by then. But if I could be useful, that'd be neat. Joe is clearly a strong leader and I know I'd learn a lot from the experience.
As far as vise-versa goes, I've been following WikiSpeed since we were both xprizing, and the speed with which the black body was built is amazing. The carbon fiber may be better suited to a $25,000 car than a $7000 or $8000 car, but at $12,000 it might be just the ticket. The same techniques could be used to make patterns for conventionally molded FRP parts, and a somewhat simpler design could be made with mostly sheetmetal and a few compound curve bits (fenders, nose, leading edge of the roof) to tie them together. So I don't think Joe would be working under me as such, I think it's be more a matter of giving him a portion of the project and turning him loose.
I've built a lot of bolt-and-bond aluminum structures (aircraft for the most part) and it has its advantages in stiffness to weigh ratio (or I wouldn't have used it) but for a GVCS car, I favor the usual GVCS materials and techniques of mild steel and welding. It's rugged, it's cheap, and when GVCS has its induction furnace and OSE welder and plasma cutter going, welded steel is going to be the predominant fabrication process (as I think it is already).
Yawn. It's 1:20 AM in Yuma. Nighty night, all.
PS--Joe, I think the wikispeed web site has been down for a couple days, or maybe there's some glitch on my end, but I just gave it a try and it popped up...and now it's 1:30 Double-yawn. J PPS--Tom, can you point me to the best bang-per-buck brand of small variable displacement hydraulic pumps?
We have had our focus on air-cooled gasoline to date, though there are some diesel engines in use as well. The ultimate goal is to use renewable fuel sources and to this end, the OSE steam engine is being developed.
Meanwhile, we need to get the other projects going, so we use what is available and add flexibility for switching power plants later - thus the power cube. In it's prior implementations, it has provided hydraulic fluid power. While this does lend some flexibility, it also has limitations (like poor efficiency).
Lately, we have discussed splitting the Power Cube into two components: the "Engine" component and the "Driven" component (for lack of better terms). The engine component would have the engine, battery, fuel tank and deliver power to the driven component using a "quick connect" shaft. The driven component would be whatever the engine drives: Hydraulic pump, electric generator, air blower, water pump, direct kinetic drive, etc. This adds flexibility and also the opportunity for better efficiency. Of course, efficiency is a key concern as it is a focal point for cars.
This brings us to the question of the best power delivery for the OSE car? Here are my thoughts on the following two options:
- Direct kinetic drive - requires clutch, transmission, shafts. Fixed configuration. Fast implementation.
- Electric generator - requires control/power electronics, cables, electric motors. Needs R&D time.
The first option is by far the easiest to implement (buy or build a WikiSpeed car), add roof and other creature comforts. This would be fairly rigid implementation - for example: it would be a major task to switch from an engine with a vertical shaft to one with a horizontal shaft.
In my opinion, electric power is by far more flexible but would require much more R&D time, but could be accelerated by using available designs for electric / hybrid autos. It would also lend the flexibility of adding a second power reserve in the form of batteries. In fact, the best route would be a batter driven car, possibly supplemented by a fuel driven engine. Electricity is generated much more efficiently on large-scale, then charge batteries. Use batteries first, then the engine only after batteries are exhausted.
Run engine at most efficient RPM for power generation. When running, the engine can provide some power to the car and some to the batteries. It will likely generate more power than necessary for charging batteries and some type of governor may be necessary.
I think either power delivery option would work, or perhaps we should explore (if funds are available).
The project could be greatly accelerated by distributing the design & implementation tasks. Many of these will still be necessary even if buying a WikiSpeed car:
- Part ordering
- Compliance / Standards
This would enable members to work in areas of their expertise.
To get this project going, should define:
- Power Delivery options
- Fabrication Location(s)
We need to get organized and get going.
To answer your inquiry: We have bought most of our hydraulic parts from SurplusCenter.com but lately, I have bought some from a local store (Stuart Hose & Pipe) which has better prices. Note: I haven't bought any variable displacement pumps, so that may not help at all.
On Sun, 26 Feb 2012 09:17:58 -0500, Mark J. Norton wrote
Sorry I missed your call last night, Jack. I can only plead that I was away at a party with my wife having a good time.
An excellent alternative to sitting by the phone.
I'll give you another try in about an hour.
Hi Tom (and guys),
> With the goal of having an OSE car by the year's end in mind, I > think buying a Wikispeed car would be a huge jump toward the OSE goals. I'm not up to date on the Wikispeed proposal, mostly...is this Wikispeed car the SGT01, or another car design?
> Probably the single largest consideration for the OSE cars is power delivery I think it's a major consideration, but since the eventual power source goal is established and we seem to be in agreement that it's unlikely to be ready for the first prototype, flexibility is the key -- that is, we shouldn't let the first prototype lock the design into any specific method of power delivery.
> Direct mechanical power would provide the quickest means of getting > a working car That's my intent, though I didn't specify delivery because there's the hope of a late breaking PowerCube advancement, and I'd like to keep the option of switching to it if time allows (e.g. a suitable PowerCube in October).
Direct mechanical is sure the quickest and easiest for a car. Diesel-Electric is well suited to trains, where the enormous weight that has to be accelerated makes slipping the clutch impractical. Diesel trains use electrical power delivery because it's lighter, cheaper, and more reliable than a 60 speed transmission and a clutch the size of a satellite dish.
Feb. 27, 2012
Per Tom, Jack and Joe's points w.r.t using the current wikispeed car as prototype 1 and then improving on it, I'm 100% in favor of that. After all, that's what being modular is all about(the current asset is the research and design that Joe and his team has already done, so lets build around that). once we have an OSE/wikispeed team, we can then plug and chug the most efficient and modular engine as we dev prototype 2.
To address Tom's point of fabrication location and Mark's point of leadership, I'm in favor of working around Joe's team and under his leadership out in WA(integrating our concerns/requirements/designs into their backlogs and sprinting from that). It's amazing to see how organized and collaborative they are. This will also shape the timeline that Tom mentioned below.
As for the finance, I think Marcin or Mark will have the answers.
I admit I was afraid something like this might happen. After a series of emails that suggested we might be taking a collaborative approach, you move immediately to suggest that the design be based on your previous work. I would suggest, Khuong, that this is not a collaborative approach. Have you looked at Jack's design in any kind of detail? Why would you assume that the WikiSpeed design is better?
I've looked at the photos on wikispeed.com. I don't see any links to detailed design specs. I do note that the prototype is a single person vehicle - which doesn't meet the initial OSE requirements.
Khuong - if you want this to be a competitive bid process, then we should proceed down that path. It means that Team WikiSpeed will be required to submit a formal proposal with enough detail to satisfy us (OSE) that the result will meet OSE needs and requirements. The proposal should include development cost estimates.
If you'd rather approach this in a collaborative manner, then the first thing to do (beyond organizing the team, perhaps) is to examine all existing designs and evaluate what features will best suit an OSE design. If the team - as a whole - decides that one existing design is close enough that it can be used as base, that's fine, but don't try to do it by fiat. I'd like to see documented REASONS why one design is better than another and HOW it meets OSE requirements.
Joe: Jack and the others have a lot of respect for your previous accomplishments in leading projects like this one. As near as I can tell, they are willing to accept you as the leader of the OSE Car project (subject to approval by Marcin), provided you handle it in a fair and inclusive manner. As such, it's time to step up to the plate and exert some leadership. If you want to be involved, now is a very good time to step in and help us get this organized.
- Mark Norton
On Mon, Feb 27, 2012 at 6:43 AM, Mark J. Norton <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> I admit I was afraid something like this might happen. After a series of emails that suggested we might be taking a collaborative approach, you move immediately to suggest that the design be based on your previous work. I would suggest, Khuong, that this is not a collaborative approach. Have you looked at Jack's design in any kind of detail? Why would you assume that the WikiSpeed design is better?
> I've looked at the photos on wikispeed.com. I don't see any links to detailed design specs. I do note that the prototype is a single person vehicle - which doesn't meet the initial OSE requirements.
The WIKISPEED car has 4 seat and 2 seat interiors, we campaigned in the 4 seat, mainstream class in the X Prize. Where do you see a single person vehicle? It may help spending some time on www.youtube.com/WIKISPEED, www.facebook.com/WIKISPEED, or www.twitter.com/WIKISPEED, or consuming the links Marcin has posted about WIKISPEED on OSE: http://opensourceecology.org/wiki/Lessons_Learned
> Khuong - if you want this to be a competitive bid process, then we should proceed down that path. It means that Team WikiSpeed will be required to submit a formal proposal with enough detail to satisfy us (OSE) that the result will meet OSE needs and requirements. The proposal should include development cost estimates.
> If you'd rather approach this in a collaborative manner, then the first thing to do (beyond organizing the team, perhaps) is to examine all existing designs and evaluate what features will best suit an OSE design. If the team - as a whole - decides that one existing design is close enough that it can be used as base, that's fine, but don't try to do it by fiat. I'd like to see documented REASONS why one design is better than another and HOW it meets OSE requirements.
Joe: Jack and the others have a lot of respect for your previous accomplishments in leading projects like this one. As near as I can tell, they are willing to accept you as the leader of the OSE Car project (subject to approval by Marcin), provided you handle it in a fair and inclusive manner. As such, it's time to step up to the plate and exert some leadership. If you want to be involved, now is a very good time to step in and help us get this organized.
I'm looking for a member or the OSE to go through WIKISPEED CAD and publish it on OSE, and then take tasks that we collaboratively determine as gaps between the SGT01 (current WIKISPEED car) and the OSE open source car, and pair with team WIKISPEED members to execute them (bend roll bars, for example). Then, that OSE group would build an example, using only the GVCS, of the OSE car from those CADs they've published, film and photo the progress, and use that to publish a "how to" guide.
As soon as an OSE member says "hey, that's me! I'll go through the CAD, review with Joe, and publish it on OSE!" and signs a team WIKISPEED member form so they have full access, then we can get started.
Let's do awesome together, -Joe
Feb. 28, 2012
With Mark's permission, I've added Matt Maier to the cc line. He's a sharp cookie and he's been keeping me in line when I go adrift on the OS Car specs (or even on my own proposal).
Also to quote from Matt's reply, "I think at the moment I'm the only OSE guy who also belongs to Wikispeed, so I can help bridge between the two groups."
Mark, if you click the video on the http://www.wikispeed.com/p/wikispeed-fuel-efficient-cars page, at 6:27 there's a quick in-cockpit clip from a camera mounted on the passenger side of the dash and you can see it has two seats. However, it's not particularly noticeable in the rest of the video because the driver masks the passenger's seat.
I think there'd be comfort issues with two people aboard as it sits, and Joe, if Wikispeed wants to keep that narrow windshield you're probably going to have to get creative. Back in Ye Olde Days, sports racers had to have two seats, and in Ye Oldest Olde Days, when sports racers were front engined, that was easy because the drive shaft went between the seats. But after mid-engine racers became the rage, the seats got bumped together, and historic photos of victory laps show passengers who are either skinny girls or contortionists.
The trouble is, shoulders are wider than hips, and two bucket seats next to each other look way cool at the car shows, and are very comfortable when driving solo, and reduce frontal area and drag because the "greenhouse" (the cockpit above the doorline) can be so narrow, but the driver's right and passenger's left shoulders and arms attempt to occupy the same space and they are horribly uncomfortable for two people on an extended drive.
Joe, since the Wikispeed can have a 4 seat interior, you might try moving the passenger's seat back 8 inches or so and put the passenger's left shoulder behind the driver's right. This staggered seating has worked for some other exotic two-seaters, giving reasonable comfort without loosing the lean-and-mean modern racecar look.
I may be going overboard with the comfort and practicality specs in my own proposal (at http://opensourceecology.org/wiki/Car/Kinentic_Vehicles_Proposal ), but I've spent over 400 hours in MAX, and I've found that comfort matters, and day-to-day practicality matters, and my specification list has had some additions in the last two years and they comes mostly from experience.
Re a competitive bid process, I've got my bid in, and if Joe cares to he can beat it. I'm comfortable with my quote and not interested in getting into a reverse auction. My concept of a best OS Car first prototype hasn't changed much since Marcin an I talked two winters ago: steel frame, mid engine, Metro power, and forward-compatible to PowerCube. Okay, the last couple winters in MAX have convinced me the OS Car needs a top, but that's about it.
I favor a new OS Car specific design, but about a month ago, someone on the forum asked about MAX as an OS Car possibility (since MAX meets the original OS Car design criteria and has shown a measure of reliability) and I replied (to paraphrase myself) "No, that's Mother Earth New's, I'll have to start with a clean slate," but I asked MEN-folk anyway. Well apparently Mother Earth News doesn't have an objection to MAX carrying on under different management. All MEN is concerned about is that MAX doesn't go to another magazine.
I have the basic parts list to convert MAX to MAXine (MAX with a Metro automotive gasoline engine instead of the Kubota industrial diesel...but it's your choice) and other than the cockpit enclosure specification of line 6.6 (which I added to the original requirements) MAX trounces the Design Criteria. It gets better than 100 mpg on the highway and has a top speed (with its current governor setting) of 91 mph, and those aren't calculated figures, they're measured figures, they're confirmed by GPS and witnesses, and MAX will perform to spec on demand, any day of the week.
So if designating an existing car as the OS Car is what Marcin and OSE want, my hat is in the ring. That's probably the quickest way to get the first prototype into the GVCS, and you've two options to choose from. One way Marcin could choose would be for Joe and me to drive our cars to a mid-point between Seattle and Cave Junction, verify our performance with sealed tanks, GPS and video, and have Marcin fly out and decide in person. Portland International Airport would be a terrific meeting place; Joe and I could meet Marcin at PDX Arrivals and we could each take Marcin on rides.
Joe, is the Wikispeed prototype licensed and legal? Is it up to a couple hundred mile road trip? It would be good publicity for OSE, Wikispeed, and Kinetic Vehicles, and I'm sure Marcin would have the courtesy to give the car not selected some "It was a difficult choice..." quotes for our web sites and magazines.
>From Joe's response to Mark's message:
> I'm looking for a member or the OSE to go through WIKISPEED CAD and publish > it on OSE, and then take tasks that we collaboratively determine as gaps > between the SGT01 (current WIKISPEED car) and the OSE open source > car, and pair with team WIKISPEED members to execute them (bend roll > bars, for example). Fine by me. I have a roll bar bender and I'm delighted to find there's a place on the Awesome Wikispeed Team where I can be of service.
> Then, that OSE group would build an example, > using only the GVCS, of the OSE car from those CADs they've > published, film and photo the progress, and use that to publish a > "how to" guide. Sounds easy.
> As soon as an OSE member says "hey, that's me! I'll go through the > CAD, review with Joe, and publish it on OSE!" and signs a team > WIKISPEED member form so they have full access, then we can get started. Matt, you're already a Wikispeed member, would this be down your alley?
> Let's do awesome together, > -Joe
If this is the approach Marcin selects, I'll be happy to pitch in. How do I become a member? The web site isn't clear, all I got was "New members are invited and will be paired with an experienced professional." I may not be awesome, but I can bend tubes on my own and can verify test data if I'm paired with an experienced professional.
On 2/27/2012 6:37 PM, Joe Justice wrote: > The WIKISPEED car has 4 seat and 2 seat interiors, we campaigned in the 4 seat, mainstream class in the X Prize. Where do you see a single person vehicle? It may help spending some time on www.youtube.com/WIKISPEED, www.facebook.com/WIKISPEED, or www.twitter.com/WIKISPEED, or consuming the links Marcin has posted about WIKISPEED on OSE: http://opensourceecology.org/wiki/Lessons_Learned
Ok, I withdraw that objection, though it really wasn't clear from the pictures on your website. Seating will be an issue, I think.
> > I'm looking for a member or the OSE to go through WIKISPEED CAD and publish it on OSE, and then take tasks that we collaboratively determine as gaps between the SGT01 (current WIKISPEED car) and the OSE open source car, and pair with team WIKISPEED members to execute them (bend roll bars, for example). Then, that OSE group would build an example, using only the GVCS, of the OSE car from those CADs they've published, film and photo the progress, and use that to publish a "how to" guide. > > As soon as an OSE member says "hey, that's me! I'll go through the CAD, review with Joe, and publish it on OSE!" and signs a team WIKISPEED member form so they have full access, then we can get started. > Let's do awesome together,
If I understand this correctly, you want OSE to use the STG01 as the basis of it's open source car. Let me clear about one thing, Joe, if we take the WikiSpeed CAD, convert it to our formats, and publish it on our wiki site, it will become an OSE design.
Historically, OSE uses one of two approaches to declaring one of the GVCS-50 designed and prototyped. The first way is to point to another project and say (in effect) "This meets the needs of this GVCS-50 product and will be used." An example of this is the Mendel 3D printer. It meets all of OSE's needs for a 3D printer, so there is no need to re-design it. The second approach is to either start from scratch or adopt an existing design, flesh it out, document it and publish it. This results in an OSE designed GVCS-50 product, ie, and OSE Design.
If we take your CAD, convert it, modify it, and publish it, it will become an OSE design. Credit will be given to WikiSpeed as having contributed to the design effort, but it will not be a WikiSpeed design thereafter. I hope you understand this distinction. Lest you think this is an egotistical argument - it's not. It's about protecting the basis of open source by having a design that we have vetted both technically and legally. As such, if we do as you suggest, it will be necessary for Team WikiSpeed to sign over open source rights to the design so that it may serve as the basis of an OSE design. I should also note that OSE cannot accept any design that is protected under an active patent.
Please note that the terms of our open source license do not prevent you from manufacturing, selling, and profiting from your initial design or even the subsequent OSE design. OSE intends to encourage an after market for the GVCS, as long as it doesn't violate the licensing terms and OSE philosphy. All OSE design must be completely free and open - unencumbered by legal restrictions (specifically IP rights and patents). We believe that this approach allows every one to benefit.
Team WikiSpeed has the option of suggesting it's design to be the designated OSE Car recommendation (as in the 3D printer example I mentioned above). If this is approach you prefer, then the following should be followed:
- Provide a link to online plans and instructions for how to build your car design. Link should be public.
- Provide a link or copy of the license under which this design its to be offered. Open source is a requirement here.
The OSE Car project team will then evaluate your design against OSE requirements. It will also review your license to ensure that it is free and open to all. It helps to use one of the standard licenses, but that is not a requirement. If your design meets our needs, then OSE will consider designating it as the recommended design.
This later approach is essentially a competitive bid, since there are other designs being offered to OSE as well.
- Mark Norton
On 2/28/2012 1:05 AM, Kinetic Aerospace wrote: > With Mark's permission, I've added Matt Maier to the cc line. He's a sharp > cookie and he's been keeping me in line when I go adrift on the OS Car specs > (or even on my own proposal).
Matt has been contributing to OSE via the forums and wiki for some time now. He is quite welcome in this conversation.
> Mark, if you click the video on the > http://www.wikispeed.com/p/wikispeed-fuel-efficient-cars page, at 6:27 there's > a quick in-cockpit clip from a camera mounted on the passenger side of the > dash and you can see it has two seats. However, it's not particularly > noticeable in the rest of the video because the driver masks the passenger's seat.
I have ceded the point to Team Wiki. It just wasn't clear to me from the photos.
> I think there'd be comfort issues with two people aboard as it sits Your comments on seating and comfort is a good analysis of the problems involved. Thank you for capturing this issue and documenting it.
> Re a competitive bid process, I've got my bid in, and if Joe cares to he can > beat it. I'm comfortable with my quote and not interested in getting into a > reverse auction. While the discussion about car requirements and possible solutions is all good, I'm largely interested in deciding how we will proceed. I think I've made OSE's position more clear in my recent message to Joe and Team WikiSpeed. That position applies to you (Jack) as well. Please have a read and see if you are comfortable with it. Questions and suggestions are welcome. This is not intended to be dictatorial, but rather an attempt to protect the philosophical basis that OSE operates on.
> I favor a new OS Car specific design, but about a month ago, someone on the > forum asked about MAX as an OS Car possibility (since MAX meets the original > OS Car design criteria and has shown a measure of reliability) and I replied > (to paraphrase myself) "No, that's Mother Earth New's, I'll have to start with > a clean slate," but I asked MEN-folk anyway. Well apparently Mother Earth News > doesn't have an objection to MAX carrying on under different management. All > MEN is concerned about is that MAX doesn't go to another magazine.
That's good news, Jack. Have you made it clear to Mother Earth News that the design will be offered under open source licensing terms? As long as they assert that they retain no rights to the design, then I believe you are free to open source it.
> So if designating an existing car as the OS Car is what Marcin and OSE want, > my hat is in the ring. That's probably the quickest way to get the first > prototype into the GVCS, and you've two options to choose from. One way Marcin > could choose would be for Joe and me to drive our cars to a mid-point between > Seattle and Cave Junction, verify our performance with sealed tanks, GPS and > video, and have Marcin fly out and decide in person. Portland International > Airport would be a terrific meeting place; Joe and I could meet Marcin at PDX > Arrivals and we could each take Marcin on rides.
This is a good suggestion for the evaluation process.
> Joe, is the Wikispeed prototype licensed and legal? Is it up to a couple > hundred mile road trip? It would be good publicity for OSE, Wikispeed, and > Kinetic Vehicles, and I'm sure Marcin would have the courtesy to give the car > not selected some "It was a difficult choice..." quotes for our web sites and > magazines. Also good questions that need to be addressed. Quotes can be made, though that is up to Marcin.
> >> As soon as an OSE member says "hey, that's me! I'll go through the >> CAD, review with Joe, and publish it on OSE!" and signs a team >> WIKISPEED member form so they have full access, then we can get started. > Matt, you're already a Wikispeed member, would this be down your alley?
See comments in previous message.
> If this is the approach Marcin selects, I'll be happy to pitch in. How do I > become a member? The web site isn't clear, all I got was "New members are > invited and will be paired with an experienced professional."
I sent you a personal email describing how to become an OSE member. Membership is rather vague at this time. It's more a matter of how to be come involved and actively contribute to OSE projects.
- Mark Norton
Unless positions change (and they might), I think that things are starting to become clear with respect to the OSE Car project. Essentially we have two teams who have expressed interest: Kintentic Vehicles led by Jack McCornack, and Team WikiSpeed led by Joe Justice. In my opinion, both teams are technically capable of designing and prototyping cars. That said, there are some pretty large differences in approach.
Jack McCornack has offered his MAX design as the basis of a design, but he's actually gone further than that. He is actively discussing how to meet OSE requirements on the forum and in the wiki. Effectively, he is already working as an OSE contributor and is willing to be flexible with regards to our needs, though there may be technical challenges presented. Jack is willing to start from scratch and design a new car. He has also expressed his willingness to be part of a team and even cede project leadership to another person.
Joe Justice has offered his SGT01 design as the basis of a design, but rather than working towards making this happen, he's asking OSE to do the work of converting the CAD drawings, build the prototype, and then do the assembly documentation. This doesn't sound like someone really interested in working closely with us. In a sense, he is "throwing the design over the wall". Even if we were willing to do that, I have concerns about the IP basis of his design. Unless he is will willing to declare it open source under a license that I can read, I have serious concerns about his motives. Joe seems to suggest that any collaboration with OSE will be done on his terms, using his techniques, and on his websites. It would be a WikiSpeed project, in other words.
In a recent message (earlier this morning), I tried to make clear that there are two approaches we might consider: evolving/building a design or designating a design. If Joe wants the latter, then he needs to be come a lot more involved in OSE. If he prefers the form, then he needs to submit drawings and a license that we can evaluate against our needs.
Given that both of these teams have firmly established technical credentials, both seem capable of submitting a design bid for review and award by OSE. Jack has expressed a willingness to collaborate and work with a team. Joe is being a bit cagey about how he will work with us. I think he wants to lead it - as Team WikiSpeed, not as the OSE Car project.
In my opinion, Joe and his team are not positioning themselves to work with OSE, but would be willing to work for OSE. Jack and his team are willing to do either. How we proceed from here is largely your call. If you ask Joe to be the OSE project leader for the car project, I think we will have problems down the line, though he is the logical person to lead the effort. Thought it goes against my own philosophy, I think a collaborative effort with the existing group of people would lead to strife, frustration, and a waste of money. That leaves us with a competitive approach.
I believe that there are two ways we can implement a competitive approach going forward:
- Assumption of existing design - perhaps modified
- Bids for a new OSE design
If the first, then we need to ask all people involved to submit an existing design for evaluation against OSE criteria. Design must be offered under free and open source license terms with no IP restrictions. If the second, then we need to formally invite design bids that include cost estimates and schedules. In both cases, we must be very clear on our requirements and expectations. I have started to describe such criteria and documented them in the wiki. Jack has helped refine the requirements, Joe hasn't.
Please on advise on how to proceed.
Hey guys, thanks for including me.
lemme go ahead and get this said. I've been poking around on OSE and Wikispeed, I'm trained in systems engineering, and I'd like to make some points that I don't think have been aired out yet.
1) The first priority should be to "publish early and often." I've described a treatment of the idea in more detail, but the summary is that the RepRap is a great example of how OSE is going to maximize its value. Quite simply, the first generation RepRap sucked. It barely worked, but it did technically work. Within 3-4 years multiple generations, made possible by the participation of thousands of people, produced several models of printer that are around $500 and rival or exceed the performance of $20,000 commercial printers. The takeaway is that we only need to get GVCS machines to the prototype stage, then get people to replicate them independently.
1a) That priority can be achieved by aggressively limiting the scope of each machine. We can better multiply our efforts by getting SOMETHING out in public, and letting it evolve, than by doing everything in-house. That means dropping as many features as possible. The tractor is a good example. It barely even has a place to sit.
2) The second priority should be modularity & integration. We aren't making 50 machines. We're making a 50-part system. Other projects can do whatever they want, but OSE is doing something bigger. We won't achieve the scale we're chasing with an additive strategy (by adding up machines). We need a multiplying strategy (synergistic machines). Rather than designing from the outside-in, where we make machines to do something and then later figure out if they can be integrated, we need to design from the inside-out, where we start from a common core and make it do different somethings.
2a) That priority can be achieved by reusing anything that has already worked in a previous prototype. It is really important that we measure the performance of each machine based on the performance of the GVCS as a system, rather than as an individual machine. Again, the tractor is a good example. The 3-way square tube technique isn't going to work forever, but it works great for prototyping. We should reuse that technique as often as possible so that the first-generation GVCS shares a common modular structure. The same with the power cubes and wheel units and whatnot. There's no reason we can't prototype the car in a week by making a frame out of square tubes, tossing a couple power cubes on top, and rolling on 3-4 wheel units.
That's where my head is at. For what it's worth, I would councel against focusing on traditional car metrics. This is because I would counel focusing on a strategy of modularity and fast turn-around. It's the same concept Wikispeed used to iterate their car so quickly, only applied to the entire GVCS rather than one machine. The car doesn't need 100mpg. I would say 20mpg is good enough. It doesn't need to seat 4 people. 2 people is good enough. It doesn't need a smooth ride. Staying upright in a turn is good enough. Etc. I think we should assume that this car is going to suck, and that's okay. Our goal shouldn't be to design an awesome car; it should be to design an adequate people-mover using the GVCS modular pieces. Putting out a vehicle design that costs $5000 means we can get people to replicate it and start the evolution. $15,000 means we need to include an mp3 player and a warranty.
This approach is a departure from the discussions I've seen here, on the forum and on the wiki. I bring it up because I think it's a more accurate implementation of OSE's core values and more likely to get the GVCS done by the end of the year. Something like a car is BEGGING to become a time and money black-hole. If we let it, the thing will take years and never really work. We need to approach the car as a sub-component of the GVCS and remember that the performance of the GVCS is more important than the performance of the car.
To put it in more emotional terms...we shouldn't be proud of the car. If the first published prototype of the car is good enough for us to be proud of it, then we gave it too much time and money. Pride will come later, when the GVCS is in its first complete generation, and much later, when it has evolved into something spectacular.
The car absolutely should be road legal. In fact, I think one discussion we should have is about what sort of tricks we can pull to get a super-cheap car on the road.
I just think the design process should start with the existing components of the GVCS.
In response to...
> While the discussion about car requirements and possible solutions > is all good, I'm largely interested in deciding how we will proceed. > I think I've made OSE's position more clear in my recent message to > Joe and Team WikiSpeed. That position applies to you (Jack) as > well. Please have a read and see if you are comfortable with it. I presume, Mark, you're referring to...
> Let me clear about one thing, Joe, if we take the WikiSpeed CAD, convert it > to our formats, and publish it on our wiki site, it will become an OSE > design. [and so forth*] ...and I'm completely comfortable with OSE as the owner and OSE publishing the information under its open source license.
> This is not intended to be > dictatorial, but rather an attempt to protect the philosophical > basis that OSE operates on. No, that's not dictatorial at all, if you folks have the how-to-do-open-source-licensing part of the program figured out, then you're the ones who should handle that.
My own open source license isn't equal to modern os licenses, but in my defense I've been os'ing my designs for over 35 years. I didn't have other os licenses to copy (I don't think the term had been invented yet) and the legal system taught me some harsh lessons that left me paranoid (or as my dad used to say, "Even paranoids have real problems."
Also my main interest has been supporting homebuilders, and they've all been happy with my open source policies, which...here, I'll quote myself from the intro on my... http://kineticvehicles.com/DwgFrontSuspension.htm ...Locost front suspension part drawing page:
Darn near every component Kinetic manufactures, using production tooling, CNC, and the economies of scale, can be made individually, with common tools and elbow grease. For those with more time than money, or who enjoy "scratch building" for any number of reasons, we're providing drawings so you can fabricate the fiddly bits yourself. The license itself is part of the jpg that is the drawing, to make it harder to remove (the rights include right to copy the drawing, provided the license text is included).
"Free license for one time personal use, for anyone building a Locost or similar vehicle for education or recreation" and so on.
The "education and recreation" part comes from FAA regs re homebuilt aircraft, which goes back to my recreational aircraft design.
But then it goes on to prohibit commercial use, a lesson learned the hard way, starting with a manufacturer that copied my Pterodactyl Fledge design in every respect but the color of anodizing (their aluminum parts were "proprietary blue", I kid you not) and my company and I were never mentioned until the day one of their customers got hurt, and suddenly, they remembered I was the designer and I was embroiled in a product liability (defect of design) lawsuit.
A couple of years later, a process server brought me an envelope from Melvin Belli's office, suing me for another injury, on the basis that my design was an attractive nuisance. The injured client said he was inspired to build an ultralight aircraft after seeing mine on a National Geographic cover, and then found out how easy it was to get information from me and my company, so he built one. The Belli theory was that I had failed in "...your legal obligation to vigorously enforce your copyright" and my failure to make my design hard to copy was equivalent to having a swimming pool with no fence around it.
So I'm willing to update my os licenses, or let OSE provide them, but I wanted you to know why I'm still in the Open Source Stone Age on my web site.
You'll also note I have some real teeth in my no-commercial-use demand. The penalty for license violation is "you should be ashamed of yourself".
That said, me designing/building a first prototype of a new car for OSE means it'll be OSE's design -- if OSE is the client and paying for the materials, then there's no question in my mind that OSE is the owner.** You clearly have more Open Source expertise than I do, that sounds win-win to me. If I'm credited for my contribution to the design effort (as described in the first footnote) and the same rights to manufacture as everybody else (ditto 1st footnote) I'll be happy.
I'm immersed in TED so i haven't had time to report.
I have talked to Joe on the phone yesterday, and I am visiting with Joe Justice after TED on Sunday, after visiting with Brianna on the ironworker progress.
From what I have seen, Joe's car is entirely OSE Spec: open source, radical modularity, high performance. Availability is today, a build can happen in 2 months if Brianna takes it on at FeF. Further, he can contribute expertise on agile/lean/scrum that led to successfu deployment in 3 months, and his experience could lead to refining a method for a broader OS product development pipeline. His design allows 2 power cubes to be retrofitted in as is, making it a turnkey solution. I have discussed IP with Joe, he stated that he is fully willing to contribute all IP into open source.
I have not seen the modularity in Jack's car, which removes lifetime design or retrofittability of power cubes into the existing design. Further, he is promising 9 month deployment for his existing version, which does not meet timeline requirements for 3 prototypes.
It appears clear to me that Wikispeed is not interested in brands as much as creating value. Joe's solution appears to be a clear winner.
Joe made commitments to collaborate and be open.I do not doubt his integrity. Gotta run.
On Tue, 28 Feb 2012 12:01:51 -0700, Matt Maier wrote > The car absolutely should be road legal. In fact, I think one > discussion we should have is about what sort of tricks we can pull > to get a super-cheap car on the road. That makes three "aye" and no "no" votes for road legal. Anybody else ready to chime in on this?
Regarding the super-cheap discussion; dang, Matt, I wish you'd been here sooner. This month has 29 hours to go (from where I'm sitting), and you raise a fascinating subject, but for me, it would call for a complete rewrite of my proposal, and I'll bet Team WikiSpeed is in the same boat. After the dust has settled on Marcin's OS Car first prototype selection, I can give you my leads on cheapmobiles. Or google "Grassroots $2012 Challenge"
>> There's no reason we can't prototype the car in a week by making a frame >> out of square tubes, tossing a couple power cubes on top, and rolling on >> 3-4 wheel units. I think there's a significant difference between "a car" and "a thing that moves". The prototype you're describing would be a good basis for an 1885 Benz Motorwagen replica, but I don't see it as a step in the development of a roadworthy prototype this year. Then again...
>> I would counel >> focusing on a strategy of modularity and fast turn-around. It's the same >> concept Wikispeed used to iterate their car so quickly ...you and Joe know things about fast turn-around that I don't; the one week reiteration thing is out of my league. Still, if it was that easy, you'd think somebody would have invested a week and built one, in the years since the OS Car was announced.
>> Putting out a vehicle design that costs $5000 means we can get people to >> replicate it and start the evolution. $15,000 means we need to include an >> mp3 player and a warranty. Good point. The cost of a finished car (presuming free labor) is pretty much arbitrary--pick a target and design to it. I like $10k, but $12k was the budget in the Design Criteria, and the best $12000 car will be better than the best $10000 car. At $5k it's going to look like a Junkyard Wars winner and be taking some efficiency hits because of it.
I hope all is going well at TED.
I must admit that I'm a bit annoyed with you, Marcin. You asked me to step in and help mediate this OSE Car situation. I did and shared correspondence with you every step of the way. In return, you've negotiated a deal with Joe without bothering to inform me that it was under consideration. It certainly explains why Joe wasn't really responding to my concerns, questions, or suggestions - he was negotiating with you, not me.
While I certainly hope that Joe can deliver on his promises to design a car that will meet OSE requirements, I have come concerns. Actually, my concerns have less to do with Joe and more to how you will relate to and treat him. Just as you have expectations in what Joe will do for OSE, so too does Joe have expectations in you as the leader of OSE. I think that, in time, there will be a breakdown between you and Joe, just as there have been similar breakdowns between you and other strong technology leaders.
Have you, for example, clearly communicated to Joe what OSE's requirements in a GVCS Car are? If so, I have yet to see them fully published. Without clear requirements, you are setting him up for failure because he won't understand what you want him to do. Have you evaluated the existing WikiSpeed design to see if it will meet our needs? I doubt it, since no one outside of Team WikiSpeed has even seen the drawings yet.
There is another problem that you might want to give some consideration to. You are the charismatic leader of Open Source Ecology. You are the acknowledged vision holder for what OSE is trying to accomplish. Meanwhile, Joe Justice is the charismatic leader of a project at the cutting edge of vehicular technology. He is a brightly shining star in the OS hardware world. He is also a fellow TED alumnus. Are you willing to share the OSE spotlight with Joe? I hope so, because you are inviting him.
Since it seems that you have the situation well in hand, I don't think there is any need for me mediate the OSE Car project any longer. I will return to work on the Steam Engine and other projects that catch my eye.
- Mark Norton
Thanks for raising the concerns. I just spoke to Joe. I have been in contact with him. Joe is on the same page.
I am interested in a solution that bears fruit as quickly as possible. He is willing to share all plans right now. I suggest that you speak with him - (phone number redacted)
I think that we can transfer his CAD and build procedures within one month, and build the car within 3 months. The only requirement is clarity that IP is open under OSE License.
Brianna is interested in fabricating this at Factor e Farm. Perhaps Jack can make improvements on any of the modules, such as engine unit. At present, we could do 2 power cubes and 2 hydraulic motors on the back wheels. That would yield a solution quickly, at about $8500 total dedicated cost for the car (not counting power cubes, since they are interchangeable).
"Street Legal"? Yes
My thoughts are for function over flare. While the racing car styles look nice, OSE designs have been more focused on functionality. The should change with the car, as its focus is the safe transport of passengers. I think that adding an attractive skin could be a great for the OSE image.
What are the "official requirements" of an automobile? I've heard a variety of things, some true some not. I'd also like to know other requirements, like seat belts and airbags.
While I like the "publish early and often" as it applies to software, hardware has limits with funding and cycle time. Waiting customers are good incentive, with the prospect of $$$.
My concerns are more about the power delivery and the powertrain. I haven't studied the Wikispeed car yet, but if we don't use their engine, we'll have to figure out the powertrain. Should we do something wild like make an electric drivetrain and modular wheel assemblies (some with electric motors, some without) - for ease of maintenance?
Jack- I LOVE your train of thought. We should do more together, and I'm glad OSE has given us the opportunity! Mark- yes, it's my expectation this design is open source, I think that's the whole point and value proposition here, and I'm all in. I'm hoping to leave the open source terms to OSE who is more experienced in open source agreements than I am. Matt- that is EXACTLY how I feel- iterate frequently and start with the minimum product that achieves the minimum meaningful value. With Jack's ninja fabrication and design skills, OSE's open source distribution platform and tooling, and WIKISPEED's modularity we can quickly whip up, I hope, a MMF OSE car (minimum marketable feature, to use a Lean Startup term) that delivers 80% of the value with 20% of the complexity.
Jack, if that's cool with you, I have a roll bar sketch to send down. it requires almost 40' of 2" OD SAE4130, which is ~$500. :( Maybe you have some pipe stock that could approximate? I'd love to start with this super simple concept, and then have you help coach me on more optimum designs as we iterate. But let's start with this moon dune-buggy if that is at all interesting to you. Later, I'd like to make a geo engine module with you, that might be compatible with WIKISPEED AND Max, if we do it just right.
Matt, if this is cool with you, I'd like you to publish the WIKISPEED chassis CAD on OSE this week. Have I shared the WIKISPEED_CAD dropbox with you yet? THIS DOES NOT MEAN OSE HAS CHOSEN THE WIKISPEED CAR AS THE OSE CAR- personally I'm hoping the OSE car has Jack's design in it and WIKISPEED's modularity- and maybe a fast way to start with that is the WIKISPEED chassis. But Jack won't be able to iterate on the design much until it is published and open source, so what I'm saying is let's get the WIKISPEED chassis published in open source right away so folks can iterate modules, weather its ever gonna have the focuesed attention of being THE GVCS car or not, because the value is in getting the design out for folks to iterate and OSE is PERFECT FOR THAT.
Mark- would you help me create the open source terms for the WIKISPEED chassis, is that possible/responsibel do do this week? Awesome, Joe
FYI, here are the requirements for road legality in the United States: http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?sid=903344824fd0ffd46fa1dc5412540dc6&c=ecfr&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title49/49tab_02.tpl See Chapter V and VI. These are MASSIVE. WIKISPEED created tests for these first before we started building cars, so we could get the benefits of focus that come with Test Driven Development. Almost all of these can be side-stepped, however, if the customer puts in the engine (module, power cube, metro engine) themselves. But if we can meet the CFR road legality standards, all the better, right? Awesome, Joe
I had an interesting thought today during my drive home.
I was thinking about the outcome of this design work. You know, what OSE's car would look like, how it would perform, etc. Then I was thinking about how I would like to buy Wikispeed's car when they get a more practical model. Then I started thinking that the OSE car would be a lot uglier and would have less performance, but would be a lot cheaper. Maybe it would be about the cost of a motorcycle, but with a fully enclosed cab, and reasonable comfort, etc.
Then I had an amazing thought. It occurred to me that I was thinking something that very few people in the history of the human race had ever thought before.
That's pretty impressive when you put it in perspective. The general wisdom is that everything's already been thought of. Well, that's not entirely accurate. You see, open source cars didn't even exist as a concept until recently. And the idea that there would be OPTIONS, that I would get to compare models and decide which one better suited my needs, is truly novel. So when I thought about two open source cars from the point of view of actually getting one I got to take a tiny step forward for the whole human race. One small step for me, one giant leap for everyone. Or something like that.
What I mean is that we're really pushing boundaries here. The mere fact that, as a group, we don't seriously doubt the car(s) will get built, so we're free to argue over what they should do, is ground breaking in a geeky kind of way. And getting to be here at the beginning of an era when people can choose between different open source cars is awesome.
I'm probably overstating this a bit, but a little hyperbole never hurt anyone.
In terms of the actual, official design requirements, I suggest that we focus on doing the bare minimum. If (when) this works, we'll be able to do anything we want, and so will everyone else. We just need a proof of concept. Something we can point to and say, "There, you see that? That's what we're talking about. It totally works, now lets make it work better." Automobile design is a HUGE conceptual space. There will always be disagreements over what a vehicle should do, and how it should do it, and everyone will be right. We just have to pick ONE of those options and I suggest we pick the lowest hanging fruit. The rest of the fruit will still be there when we get back.
What's the absolute minimum we can get away with? How much can we cut out before the thing isn't safe or useful? Forget attractiveness, forget performance, forget even having a LIST of requirements. I think we can get away with three: Is it safe, is it legal, and does it do something useful? That's it.
Wikispeed hits 'em high, OSE hits 'em low, and we change the world.
March 6, 2012
I got an email today from a guy who'd run across this press release link:
In brief, it announces the OSE partnership with Wikispeed re the OS Car, it quotes Joe Justice and Marcin and it's dated February 24. So it looks like the decision was made a good while ago. It would have saved the rest of us some time if we'd known, but such is life.
If you're wondering about the non sequiturs, and why some of us were still discussing points that had been settled, it's because the majority of contributors to this discussion weren't privy to the upper levels of correspondence and weren't getting cc'ed as the decisions were made.
This post may mark the end of the Car/Correspondence page. I suspect it is far from a complete record of the car correspondence, and with the subject of the discussion determined, missing messages are moot and there's not much left to dicuss. [JackMcCornack 3/6/2012]
PS--Here's the text of the press release, but you'll need to click the link above to see the illustrations and get access to the other links.
Enabling Emerging Markets to Manufacture Their Own Ultra-efficient Transportation, WIKISPEED and Open Source Ecology Announce Partnership in Open-Hardware Movement
Seattle, WA, and Maysville, MO, USA (February 24, 2012)
The open-hardware movement got a tremendous boost today when WIKISPEED, an innovative automotive company building modular, high-performance cars using agile design principles, and Open Source Ecology (OSE), a group committed to providing free plans and processes necessary for building the global economy, announced that they are teaming up to revolutionize transportation in the developing world.
Taking on traditional, proprietary manufacturing R & D, the two companies aim to create an open-source product-development methodology that would allow communities around the world to quickly develop their own machinery and processes to support themselves, removing a dependency on industrialized nations for costly solutions.
OSE CEO Marcin Jakubowski is developing the Global Village Construction Set, identifying essential machines that are required to build and maintain an entire economy. Jakubowski’s work includes publishing the blueprints for each piece of equipment and making the plans available for free via the Internet.
Above: Open Source Ecology is developing the Global Village Construction Set, the minimum set of tools and machinery for any community to produce and maintain a modern infrastructure in its entirety.
For his part, Joe Justice, founder and team lead of WIKISPEED, has pioneered the use of agile rapid-delivery processes (the same method used by leading software companies) for physical manufacturing and complex problem solving. This application has been highly successful, allowing Justice to design and build a high-performance modular car that gets 100 mpg and meets all U.S. safety standards, using a globally distributed team, of volunteers in just three months.
Above: The Roadster is only one of WIKISPEED’s modular, configurable cars.
Together, Jakubowski and Justice will collaborate on a modular car, which can be manufactured globally using only the Global Village Construction Set (GVCS). OSE will adapt WIKISPEED’s current car designs, making them compatible with their GVCS manufacturing infrastructure, while WIKISPEED will provide automotive design, CAD for their current ultra-efficient car, agile training, and efficiency consulting to expedite design and development. The finished plans will be open-source and available to anyone. The car will target the needs of developing countries and economy transport while retaining U.S. automotive safety standards.
According to Justice, “This is clearly the right thing to do. OSE is creating a new template for a global village, built around devices and equipment that even small, remote communities can maintain themselves. The modular WIKISPEED car makes sense in a community like this, and with OSE we will be developing a version of the car able to be produced and maintained with the OSE Global Village Construction Set anywhere in the world. The GVCS is completely revolutionary in enabling even small communities to create and maintain every piece of a thriving modern economy with contemporary comforts. Team WIKISPEED is very pleased to be helping reduce the environmental footprint while accelerating innovation and business productivity.”
Jakubowski calls the new collaboration a “bold and noteworthy step toward the open-source economy, and it will serve to encourage other change-makers to join the effort to invent distributive enterprise.” Together, the companies will work to “unleash the collaborative potential of the open-source hardware movement—Industry 2.0. We are pursuing a system of optimized production where everyone has free access to state-of-the-art product designs and blueprints, which they can, in turn, produce within their local economy. It’s an idea whose time has come.” About WIKISPEED Team WIKISPEED is a green automotive-development company that builds cars utilizing agile methodology and has prototyped a mass-manufacturable, ultra-low-cost, 100-mpg commuter car. Based in Seattle and led by Joe Justice, WIKISPEED is an all-volunteer distributed agile/scrum team: members contribute their work from various locations globally and iteratively enhance the vehicle every two weeks. This model allows extremely high-speed development, especially when paired with rapid-prototyping manufacturing tools. About Open Source Ecology Open Source Ecology, founded in 2004 by Marcin Jakubowski, Ph.D., has a stated mission to create the open-source economy, which, according to Jakubowski, “optimizes both production and distribution by publishing its trade secrets openly.” Jakubowski has recently been distinguished as a 2012 TED Senior Fellow and a Shuttleworth Foundation Fellow for his work on the Global Village Construction Set (GVCS), an open technological platform that allows for the easy fabrication of the fifty different industrial machines necessary to building a small civilization with modern comforts.
For More information: Jakubowski’s TED talk Justice’s TEDx talk OSE website Team WIKISPEED website Shuttleworth Foundation website