Local Motors

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This is a business model worth replicating, and is part of the type of business models endorsed by Factor e Farm

The designs of Local Motors Are under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License in order for OSE to built on their designs and adjust them to the GVSC Local Motors has either to change the license of their design to CC-SA or provide (under agreement) a waiver for OSE to built in a more "Freely" license

Question: Is Local Motors interested in an Open Business Model for post-scarcity economics?

Open Source car production experience: http://www.local-motors.com/

See Wired article - http://www.wired.com/magazine/2010/01/ff_newrevolution

OSE Relevance

May 2019

What do we learn from the success? of Local Motors in terms of lessons applicable to distributed, open source manufacturing? They appear to be successful, though it is not clear whether they have a sustainable business model. It is worth finding out.

  • They put forth incentive challenges, but the results are proprietary.
  • They appear to manufacture in local facililities. Is that true?
  • Their annual revenue is________?

We would be able to find out more via Stack Exchange instance on OSE.


Added Feb 2019

  • Local Motors has succeeded in crowdsourced design, but the design is not open source. Ie, it does not allow third parties to engage in production of their cars. The typical incentive is greed-related, not distributive enterprise. Ie - winner gets the glory and a cut of a monopoly product, as opposed to a free enterprise product.
  • Effectively a proprietary consortium with a pseudo-open license (see NC for explanation) - they pose as open source and thus dilute the meaning of open source. This is not good from the standpoint of transitioning to the ethical economy.
  • What are the lessons to be learned? Incentive challenges work. However, we are not aware of any precedent incentive challenge (prize) that s open source, outside of some marginal efforts and including OSE's regardless design challenges on GrabCAD.
  • Next step for OSE would be to bring forth a truly open design challenge that shows a real and distributive open source product, (1) with open source production engineering, (2) distributed quality control, and (3)accessible supply chains.
  • China is the best case of distributive Enterprise by funding national product development research which is then distributed to all companies. However, it's a China-wide 'proprietary consortium,' and not a true global open source effort.
  • OSE's goal is to create a model where stakeholders pay for open source Development, like large companies do today. Keys to that are economic power. What is the level of economic power required for that to be feasible? At what point do the Home Depots get into on-demand production? And how to motivate them to do it open source? Linux succeeded in businesses funding their own software from a common core; how to apply that to hardware?
  • How to leverage greed for open source?
  • Nota bene: MJ recognizes that the above is idealism and whining. That is - until the first case for true open source is made. The closest examples that I am aware of as of today are the China Case of Open Source and Lulzbot Case of Open Source. Prusa Research is a close contender.

Perspective from OpenSourceCitizen:

To clarify, even many OSHW experts are not aware that it is ILLEGAL for a DIY person to build anything that infringes on any part of patent/IP, even if its just for their own use or just as an artistic/creative expression in the privacy of their own home. The Rally-Fighter licensing was revolutionary in the car industry because it permitted DIY replication. This, plus it being designed in their online community platform(~60,000 members), merited it to be considered open-source despite the 'Noncommercial-No Derivative Works issue.

However: There is a youtube video where Jay Rodgers(CEO) explains that the Rally-Fighter, their first and thus far only production car, uses this license but that all future products and designs would be under a completely open license.

I spent a week at Local Motors in 2012 between SEMA and FABTECH to gauge their interest in an the open source truck and meet interested local collaborators. Local Motors is incredibly generous in the use of their shop for what is essentially a hackerspace for cars(but they are very limited on shop space). However their community, employees and business model are mostly very NOT interested in utilitarian design and "minimal viable products". They thrive and depend on more aesthetically oriented designs, in other words they are not interested in being farmers nor GVCS implications. Otherwise, this would be a good fit, if they are willing, because automotive engineering expertise is much more critical for car design then truck(Roadworthy, MPG, Precise Steering/Braking/Handling, Safety) The Rally Fighter uses drop on body shells like team wikispeed. They are equipped to design, source and handle these properly.

MJ Comment - there is a technical definition of open source. Local Motors is not open source. Assuming Jay understands this distinction, claiming open source is unetbical on his part. This is pointed out because such confusion weakens the case for real open source. At stake is the transition to the true open source economy, a prerequisite to ending artificial scarcity.

Discussions with CEO in Korea at the Seoul Digital Forum