Public Production Engineering

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Public Production Engineering refers to techniques of inclusion, access, and transparency that allow anyone in the public to contribute to product development of open source products. This is opposite to the standard of a single company or its affiliates engaging in production, based on proprietary R&D. We know of no product development platforms that are open source in the product development phase. There are plenty of examples of open source projects (see Product vs Project), but we know of no examples of open source products (outside of OSE products) - namely enterprises that share their production engineering with the intent of distributing wealth far and wide in society - in the form of products that lend themselves to scalable, distributed production.

Public production engineering - or processes for public participation in product development - and the resulting freely-accessible production-enabling documentation - can be used for starting manufacturing and production enterprises on a small scale in a distributed and Distributive way - especially in a Circular Economy. OSE believes that the current centralized production system can transition to Flexible Fabrication, and even further - to fully distributed production on a small scale using Open Source Microfactories and open source design that is available globally at no cost. Public production engineering, and Distributed Quality Control, are some of the key elements of this transition.

Public production engineering is the design of production engineering and quality control that allows for efficient, high quality production on the small scale of an owner-operator. The Owner-Operator is a small family business from 1 to about a dozen people. The distinction between craft and public production engineering is that the public production engineering enterprise relies on higher technology or automated equipment. However, unlike mass production - the level of technology required is still accessible and low cost by virtue of open source hardware. It can be said that public production engineering contributes to craft production- ie, Flexible Fabrication - which is a mixture of craft and industrial processes.