Yep- good docs are key. Perhaps this will be a problem for kickstarter campaigns. The focus wil be on getting the product out and not developing the documentation infrastructure needed to really get momentum going. I'd like to see more kickstarter likecampaigns involve the community as more than just financial backers. How about getting backers to help with documentation, testing, example designs, etc as a form of 'backing' too?
Yeah, I think that the community will be key. I look forward to seeing how they implement it. This combined with good documentation. I think that these are two key things to have a sucessful open source project, especially one like the Red Pitaya. Most of the open source projects that I come across are just junk. It is sad to say. I know that people get all excited about them, but oftentimes they over promise and under deliver, and it takes a great effort to just get them to work.
I think that the biggest thing is that they are developing a community around the device. This to me is more important than being open source. I have seen many open source projects that are almost unintelegable. They lack documentation, or how to even get basic functionality out of the devce. Worse yet they contain errors.
With the community effort it allows for the sharing of ideas and the real process of learning takes place. You have both teachers and students of various levels. For me this will be great. I am looking forward to learning more about custom instrumentation and FPGA's.
It is really great to see products like this rise to the top. There is a lot of noise still in the crowd funded projects, but I think that it is getting better. The one thing that I do not like about Kickstarter is that it is rather hard to search for the types of things that you are looking for.
The Red Pitaya project is truly a game changer in that introduces a new category of devices. It offers open source software that's easy to use and at the same time performs a t a certain level of functionality. Web-based applications are becoming more and more important with cloud computing and Red Playa takes full advantage of that wave. Part of the ease of use icomes in the fact that it only takes one click to access many of these instruments and that source code is available for those looking to offer new applications in development. On the whole this is an exciting breakthrough and one that shouldn't be overlooked. There are many uses for it and we should see more devices like it in the coming years.
I wanted to post this for reasons of full disclosure. I really do like the Red Pitaya concept, though I have not received any financial compensation from them. I have received the promise to be able to test on at a future date. I also have developed a good friendship with Rok, the founder. He and I exchange emails on a regular basis. We have also kicked back and forth some futuere ideas. I feel that it is important for the readers to have this information.