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Hardware Technology

Bunnie Huang's Novena Open Source Laptop Launches Via Crowd Supply 88

First time accepted submitter ogcricket (3557713) writes with news about a new laptop designed by Andrew Huang and Sean Cross. "Earlier this year, the two Singapore-based engineers fashioned a laptop made almost entirely from open source hardware, hardware whose designs are freely available to the world at large. They called it Project Novena. Anyone could review the designs, looking for bugs and security flaws, and at least in theory, that meant you could be confident the machine was secure from top to bottom, something that’s more desirable than ever in the post-Edward Snowden age....The original idea was simply to encourage others to build their own open source laptops at home. But now the pair are taking the project a step further. Starting today, you can order your own pre-built Novena laptop through the crowd-funding site Crowd Supply, and it will ship out in the coming weeks. Much like Kickstarter, Crowd Supply is place where you can put up money to help fund a company and then get a product in exchange."
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Bunnie Huang's Novena Open Source Laptop Launches Via Crowd Supply

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  • by H0p313ss ( 811249 ) on Wednesday April 02, 2014 @07:13PM (#46644383)

    $1,995 for a laptop??

    How does an open-source machine cost so much more than a closed, proprietary one sold by a for-profit corporation?


  • by fizzer06 ( 1500649 ) on Wednesday April 02, 2014 @07:30PM (#46644501)

    the post-Edward Snowden age

    Shouldn't that read "the post-NSA age"? Or do we still blame the messenger?

  • Missing the point (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 02, 2014 @07:38PM (#46644567)

    I hear you about the price, and merely being open source and secure is not what makes this laptop awesome.

    This isn't just a laptop, it's a hacktop. It's the equivalent of a portable electronics lab. It has GPIO headers and an integrated FPGA. There are no laptops in existence with these kind of features.

    Bunnie started out just building the laptop for himself, as it's OBVIOUSLY not the most price efficient way to do things, but builders, engineers, and hackers wanted this. They know what they're getting.

  • by complete loony ( 663508 ) <{Jeremy.Lakeman} {at} {gmail.com}> on Wednesday April 02, 2014 @08:27PM (#46644967)

    If you just want a laptop, this isn't for you. Think of it as a portable workstation with FPGA and other features for rapid hardware prototyping and hacking.

    Personally I think it would be more usable with the traditional clamshell design. Right off the bat, you're going to need another layer of protection for the screen and somewhere to store a keyboard before you can consider lugging this thing around.

  • by msauve ( 701917 ) on Wednesday April 02, 2014 @08:38PM (#46645077)
    Think of it as a workstation with a processor as powerful as cell phone.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 02, 2014 @11:14PM (#46646079)

    Fixed costs matter less per unit as you make more, so you can charge less per unit and make the same profit. Buying a $20,000 laser cutter will matter a lot more to your pricing if you are only going to use it to cut 10 sheets of metal rather than 10,000 sheets. It also takes less manhours to do administrative things like accounting when you already have a system in place and are able to simply add additional items rather than doing the entire process again. Not to mention everyone being new to the hardware manufacturing business, which leads to all sorts of inefficiencies.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 03, 2014 @03:29AM (#46646889)


    It doesn't. If you buy 1000000 units you will be able to negotiate a price from a manufacturer that is competitive to other laptops that are produced in equivalent amounts. Assuming that you can fork out the money on delivery.

Some people manage by the book, even though they don't know who wrote the book or even what book.