Ah, Kickstarter and crowd-funded projects. This is without a doubt one of my favorite type of websites online to visit. This is because I absolutely love to see innovation in people. Many of the ideas that you see crop up on this website are incredibly marketable but they are so much of a gamble that you would never really see a large company who has shareholders to look out and ‘have a go’ at attempting to sell the products. One of these innovative products is ‘Project Novena‘.
Project Novena is the brain child of two Singapore-based Engineers, Andrew Huang and Sean Cross. The project? A completely ‘open source’ laptop. The theory is that the whole laptop has been designed from open source hardware. The schematics of this hardware are available to anybody. This could technically mean that this is one of the most secure devices in the world. This is because anybody will be able to whip up those schematics and take a little look for errors in the design and ensure that any security loopholes are patched quickly.
At the moment Project Novena is being offered on a website which is similar to Kickstarter. It is known as ‘Crowd Supply’, and it has already started to generate a little bit of a buzz there. You can order your open source laptop today (and the price is pretty competitive) and you should have it land on your doorstep within the coming months. This is one of those products which you are really going to want to jump on fast because as soon as it goes out of the ‘crowd funding’ mode it will be offered for a much higher price.
The launch of this project marks a growing trend towards open-source hardware. In fact, you will be surprised at just how many companies at the moment are utilizing it. Perhaps one of the most ‘famous’ is that of Facebook. The main reason is due to the security benefits of having an ‘open system’. You also have the benefit of a system which promotes innovation.
The machine is available in a couple of different styles. The first is Aluminum and the second made of wood (crazy for a laptop, right?). Buyers will find that only a few of the components come inside of the device. This is because it has been designed to be added to over-time. Basically, you put in whatever hardware you wish. The system, unlike most other laptops, has been designed to be easy to modify. You do not have to worry about breaking anything. In fact, the only thing likely to break are the bezels, but you get a few of those in the box extra ‘just in case’.
One of the versions of the machine comes complete with a HD display and your Motherboard. If you wish you are able to purchase the motherboard on its own (ideal if you already have a case that you wish to slide the motherboard into). The system currently runs on a Linux operating system and comes complete with an ARM processor. This means it is not as powerful as many devices on the market. These laptops are not for everybody. They are for those that care about security mainly and can deal with processing power comparable to a netbook or smartphone.