'Then there came again and touched me one like the appearance of a man, and he strengthened me, and said, O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee; be strong, yea, be strong.'
The Holy Bible "Daniel"
Note: Initially, this article was published in the context of the project "DIY Vawoom", which should be interpreted as "Make yourself something amazing." But this name does not reflect its full purpose. From now on, following the "Philosophy of the Common Business" by N.F. Fedorov, the project is called "Common Business" (further CB).
In this article, I invite you to think about the development of software and hardware, intended to support DIY-style production by individual order. In particular, it may be electronics, but I do not consider platforms like Electronics DIY or DIY Trade, because speaking about precisely flexible, geographically distributed production of a wide range stuff.
Closer in ideology is the approach of Technopark University ITMO. However, it is centralized - a large room, a lot of different equipment, but absent, for example, a sewing machine for leather. In addition, that laboratory is designed mainly to prepare students for the actual production process. I appeal to those, who already have real experience of creativity and implementation, but unexpectedly for themself "slipped and fell from the stage into an orchestra pit." Therefore, I chose this picture of Lyudmila Lebedeva, with whom had the honor to meet once at Kiev's "Montmartre". She allowed to put it in one of my publications, but the photo on the phone is incomparable with what you'll see in her gallery.
Karl I. Wighers thoroughly covers the development of software requirements, and in addition to well-known works I liked his article, where on the need for a definition of "what" and "how", he mentions "why", as the most important, in my opinion.
'... we are now allowing human and social capital to depreciate, auguring ill for future economic growth ...'
Peter Temin "The Hidden Decline in Human Capital — and the Danger Ahead"
My pension of ~$50/mo is not special for millions of compatriots, but an uninitiated person can see another reason for the coincidence of thoughts and desires among so many of my fellow citizens. In such a situation, the rulers of ancient Rome did not wait for the people to develop a stable reflex of disgust and distrust. They not only introduced the "Laws of XII tables", but began to steadily execute them. And the people returned ...
- Note: do not take the following as a boring complaint against an insidious fate. Following own understanding of morality, I repeatedly had to reluctantly reject extremely lucrative offers. But even now, I will not go to the US consulate to take a work visa if again unexpectedly will find in the final document the requirement that all my past, current and future developments would belong to the inviting company. It's not about pride or greed. It’s just about that a person, who putting such traps in a tinsel of words, or arranging an indecent show of hard firing of a previous employee, either didn’t open the Global Slavery Index, or doesn’t understand that only free like-minded people can create Ferrari FXX-K.
One day, the developer of "hardware" of the device, in which development I originally participated as an MCU programmer, was quit without explanation. The implementation deadlines were pressed and the company management delivered a deliberately non-working product to the customer at a price of ~$20K. I was offered to make a complete software package at all levels for a very high reward, based on future sales results. I was developing at home, because the work often ended after midnight.
Final: when it was made and successfully implemented more than 15 devices, I was suddenly notified that fired a few months ago by own wish and may take the work book now. After a while the director and the chief engineer of the company, which every resident of my city knows, called me and asked for a bit of functionality. They did not know about my dismissal. Later called an intelligent circuit designer, with whom I had not met for 10 years and asked how to use the ModelSim simulator in the Quartus environment. He turned out to be next in this amazing lineup, but replied bravely - "They will not deceive me." Since then, the mention of the device has disappeared from the site of the company.
I recommend you to watch the full interview on the current state and prospects of Artificial Intelligence. The type of activity, offered for selection, is small and lies among those, which difficult to master, requires a long time to learn and confirm knowledge with practice. I assume that the problems, highlighted by me rather superficially will sink into oblivion, soon. The achievements of such powerful organizations as IBM, SNOMED, LOINC, and others in the field of knowledge systematization, will make it possible to establish the diagnosis and prescribe treatment automatically, without human intervention. The circle will get more narrowed and, for example, V.S. Vysotsky gave the following prognosis to dentists, in one of his comic songs:
'And where to find the teeth for all?
So - unemployment ...'
Regarding the prestigious jobs for ITs, I would like to show by this project, that the amount of work can decrease dramatically very quickly.
Very briefly on the concept of the project
'Evolutionary deadlock awaits humanity not only on the path of abandoning integration, but also on the path of such integration, when the creative freedom is sacrificed to the union of people.'
V.F. Turchin "Inertia of fear. Socialism and totalitarianism."
In one article there is no possibility to describe everything in detail, but in short it’s about creating a “family”. I am very impressed with the rules of bees and ants, because based on the shortest and most capacious definition of the human being, which I met in the ancient book "Zohar", the proportions between Knowledge and Mercy are skewed in modern society.
By CB I mean the voluntary, based on the principle of sufficiency, union of free creative people, who do not set themselves the goal of becoming millionaires. In principle, it is possible to create alone something for $million. But, first, without CB you will not get the results of your work. One more example - I have never had own firm and have not done developments by order, but familiar with the situation that this esteemed person is talking about. CB's support in such matters is invaluable ...
Secondly, because The Creator did not reward everyone with the gift of invention, then a prerequisite for the existence of CB should be assistance in teaching and engaging everyone who is sincere and honest, but not able to apply their efforts. And this assistance should not have borders (international). In this regard, I was looking at different projects, but even the most powerful "Clinton Global Initiative", in my opinion, is somewhat impersonal.
Five stages of product life
Product Search (draft variant of SPA online store)
The theory is unattractive without a practical example. Therefore, I am going to develop a draft application, on which concretize the basic principles of the concept implementation. The store chosen because it is always primary, because aims at the main task - the identification and implementation of the desires of a wide range consumers. In general, the buyer is one of the main links in the chain of the creative act of product design, because his:
- causes the manufacturer to describe the function
- which, in turn, can create actuator(s).
For example, concerning a doorbell, the development of which described in this series of articles, the chain looks like this:
- Wish: last year, Bob bought a doorbell for his girlfriend, that had the following
- Functions: The list proposed by the manufacturer is very shortened, selected by the buyer highlighted in red
- wired bazer
- wireless bazer
- wireless melodic
- wireless with the ability to talk anywhere in the world
- Actuators: the list proposed by the manufacturer is very abbreviated, the one chosen by the buyer is highlighted in red
- Button-host-Internet exchange protocol:
- Host case design: Bob's girlfriend already has a doorbell button with a built-in 1-Wire connector, and she likes it
- Makak Jamaican
The store can offer customer to choose a product in a standard way, if there was a refusal and there is some with the necessary parameters. But more important is the possibility of manufacturing a product in an area, located close to the buyer. It also facilitates warranty service. The store should be able to quickly pick up "local" makers from the CB. In this case, for example, an individual image of the necessary firmware for MCU can be compiled in another country, even from the source libraries of different authors. As a result, instead of the MCU with 8kb of program memory, it may be sufficient to use the cheaper one, with 1kb. In the same way, it is proposed to deal with manufacturing of cases (3-D descriptors should be transferred from the libraries of the respective authors), up to the generation of individual descriptors of automated placement of elements on printed circuit boards (PCB), soldering temperature profiles, GERBER files, for PCB drilling, etc.
The store should also give the buyer an opportunity to leave a request to make of unknown "actuator" and encourage him for his creativity. Let's continue the story of Bob, who decided once to make a surprise, and came without warning to girlfriend whom, as we remember, bought a doorbell with WiFi. She replied from Cyprus in the company of a hairy "napoleon". Great surprise! Now he protects his nerves and for the new girlfriend looking for a doorbell in the form of a simple copper hammer. We don’t have one and Bob for sure must get encouragement, after such a device will appear in the CB's product catalog.
Consider the prototype of GUI store frontend, made by me with the Pencil tool:
In the case of electronics products, the buyer has possibility to select a Model of the device required, as well to adjust its consumer properties (see the round buttons with numbers) and design features (see the buttons Material, Shape and Color). But there are cases, when "product" does not need reproduction. For example, a pleasant female voice. If someone looking for a narrator to record a commercial, then this GUI is useless for him, as well as for a macho, who wants to tell about his amazing timbre.
So, I intentionally tighten the task, and want the front-end GUI to be:
- always friendly and simple, even for people with disabilities. Although, this interface is not as complicated as, for example, the SOP descriptor of the Blood Center, but it is also inconvenient from the point of view of WCAG.
- universal and, following the requirements of previous point, allowed to reflect the properties of a product of any type and level of complexity. The concept of complexity is excluded and any descriptor will be considered complex, since it can be changed at any moment (simplified or complicated).
- multilingual. The GUI and content should reflect information in the language, chosen by user on their display. If there is no translation, the default language is traditionally English.
- tested and approved code should not require changes in the future. Those, written once and forever, while supporting the requirements of all the preceding points.
- the program should be available for free.
The above GUI does not meet most of the requirements and, therefore rejected.
Consider ways of product describe in the following programs:
Hope you agree, the approaches are quite similar, although Magento additionally allows to separate the descriptors into simple and complex. In my opinion, this only complicates the matter, because a priori allows for ambiguity. After all, what is elementary for one person, may look like Newton's Binomial Theorem for another. In any case, the proposed methods for describing the final product seem to be insufficiently flexible and incommensurately time-consuming in the annex to the declared general task. We will need support for a much larger number of parameters and complex relationships:
- The GUI should be simple and understandable to a person, unexperienced in programming.
- Anyone should have the opportunity without help, easily and with pleasure to explain features of own product.
- The Descriptor's format must be harmoniously integrated into the structure of production.