RS Components (RS) has revealed a major extension to its online DesignSpark platform for engineers with the launch of a new open source 'DesignShare' area.
RS Components is the trading brand of Electrocomponents plc, a world-leading high service distributor of electronics and maintenance products.
Developed in conjunction with Elektor, a leading magazine for electronics design engineers, DesignSpark 'DesignShare' hosts projects, and encourages sharing, collaboration and concept discussions in a design community environment. 'DesignShare' includes two main areas: 'Ideas' and 'Projects'.
The 'Ideas' or 'Incubator' section enables DesignSpark members to post project ideas, generate discussion and invite comment from the community. The most popular and highest rated ideas will be created as projects by Elektor via its network of engineers. The project’s progress will be shared with the DesignSpark community.
In the 'Projects' area, users will find all of the available projects tagged with relevant keywords for easy navigation. The individual project pages include details of how the project developed at each stage, along with a collection of assets that will enable users to build the project themselves. Project assets may include PCB schematics and layout files for DesignSpark PCB, for example, along with mechanical blueprints, software code and/or machine code, mechanical drawings and CAD files. There is also a plug-in to the RS Components website where users can purchase kits.
Professional projects requiring commercial confidentiality will have a 'privacy' option that allows users to limit access to selected contributors. All publicly viewable projects will be available as open source and downloadable free-of-charge.
David Tarrant, Head of Community Development at RS Components explains that the new 'DesignShare' area has been developed to make it easier for engineers, students and hobbyists in the DesignSpark and the wider community to collaborate on, share, and download projects and ideas.
Wisse Hettinga, International Director for Elektor, part of the international publishing house, EIM adds that they have partnered with RS Components on the 'DesignShare' initiative as they have a common goal of inspiring people at any level to develop their electronics design skills. The online DesignSpark community is the ideal forum to reach budding and experienced engineers, and to foster collaboration and project sharing in support of continued innovation in electronics design.