At LCA2013, the Arduino Mini-Conference will build upon the experience of the previous 3 Arduino Mini-Conferences with a brand new hardware project and presentations to reflect the current state of "all things Arduino".
The concept of Free / Open Source Software, already well understood by LCA attendees, is complemented by a rapidly growing community focused around Open Hardware and "maker culture". One of the drivers of the popularity of the Open Hardware community is easy access to cheap devices such as Arduino, which is a microcontroller development board originally intended for classroom use but now a popular building block in all sorts of wierd and wonderful hobbyist and professional projects.
Interest in Open Hardware is high among FOSS enthusiasts but there is also a barrier to entry with the perceived difficulty and dangers of dealing with hot soldering irons, unknown components and unfamiliar naming schemes. The Arduino Miniconf will use the Arduino microcontroller board as a stepping stone to help ease software developers into dealing with Open Hardware. Topics will cover both software and hardware issues, starting with simpler sessions suitable for Open Hardware beginners and progressing through to more advanced topics.
Andy Gelme started hacking as a teenager when microprocessors were first available and you had to build your own computer. His software career has included the spectrum of computing ... from supercomputers to embedded controllers. Establishing the Melbourne HackerSpace in 2009, Andy dreams of being part of a growing and passionate social-technical community that accomplishes astonishing hacks and welcomes all who are interested, regardless of experience.