Friday, February 26, 2010

Applying Open Source to future classic cars

One key issue that drive many car enthusiasts mad is the risk that cars from the 90ies (some even say 80ies) can't be driven in a few years anymore because there are no spare parts and specialists to fix electronics problems. This is a real thread. Many of the component manufacturers have disappeared and cars become more and more complex, each part depends on other parts to work.
So here's a solution:
Why doesn't Bosch or another one of these electronics manufacturers propose a standard component platform with defined and open interfaces and deliver a sample program code to simulate what we had in cars in the past as Open Source? Car specialists or even manufacturers could take this electronics platform, adapt it to specific cars and alter the control program code to fit the purpose. As many of the car components (i.e. the CAN bus) are standardized already today this should be possible. Thanks to the fact that all code would have to be published again, more and more versions would be available and could be used for many different cars. BMW is trying to do something like this for its older race cars whereas not open source, but at least the direction is right.
So, dear car and electronics component manufacturers, please think about this and start to build a future for many great cars we have today (think Ferrari F40, Aston Martin DB7, TVR 350C, Alfa-Romeo 8C, Porsche Carrera GT, etc.).

No comments: