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Inventing New Products/Inventions/Open sourcing inventions

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Question
What do you think of the idea and the success of open source inventions?

One way to make an invention useful is to present ideas to the public through discussion forums, Wikibooks, webites, etc ( are there any other ways?) These may build on the inventions of others:

For example, suppose I come up with the idea of a ladder that folds into half its length.

1. I build a prototype
2. I discuss the design on engineering forums
3. I set up a website describing it
4. I publish free plans to build it
5. I popularize the above plans

Are there any problems associated with the above steps? I am mainly concerned about encountering opposition due to intellectual property violations or any other hostile actions.

Answer
From what I have seen on the internet it seems like a good way to go. Most of my own projects in fact are open source. You will need to actively develop your project to get momentum by blogging and building a community. If you use other open source projects in your own project you'll want to check the licences for these to make sure they're compatible with what you are doing.  

Inventing New Products/Inventions

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Maurice Duteau

Expertise

As a contract manufacturer, product designer, mechanical engineer, small business owner I know what it takes to get ideas from the drawing board and into production.

Experience

My business is located in Shanghai China where I've been doing contract manufacturing for the past 10 years. My experience on the ground in China has given me a good understanding of how things get done over here.

Education/Credentials
BASc, Mechanical Engineering

Past/Present Clients
Phillips Medical, Invensys, Carrier, Medtronics, Dirtt.

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