Caleb, That was a very powerful talk you gave at the ohs! (and no slides!) I do hope the organizers recorded it and plan to post it.
Agree that you can actually "feel" the ground moving when attending one of these events. Having attended many embedded design conferences and a couple of open hardware conferences I am always struck by how far apart the two camps are. Really great things will happen when there is more cross-pollination between the two groups. Hopeful that designwest will have a significant open hardware presence?
that happens all the time, we just don't necessarily recognize it. For example, all those 3d printers that use fillament on the market now? Those started as a garage project. Hell, mine literally has an arduino strapped to the side as the control board.
the problem is, once they go to mass produce things they often go through the normal process of converting to more cost effective electronics so we don't recognize the DIY roots.
You keep asking if these will "show up in the commercial market" They aren't meant to be parts of mass manufactured systems. They are their own product. Just like legos. You may use it to prototype something, but it isn't the right tool for mass production. Legos do well on their own as that thing.
Arduino said that over 300k units have been sold. That doesn't include all the knockoffs and derivitives. It is a small but healthy system of its own.
The connection between DIY and Apple and Samsung is in the interest they build. Those kids/teens learning on Arduinos may very well go on to shape the industry thanks to this foundation. It is cool to do this type of thing now. When I was a kid, it very much was NOT.
The Other Tesla David Blaza5 comments I find myself going to Kickstarter and Indiegogo on a regular basis these days because they have become real innovation marketplaces. As far as I'm concerned, this is where a lot of cool ...