Why open source test equipment?

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Companies that require new test and measurement solutions are often faced with a choice “make versus buy”. There are pros and cons of both. Devtank offer the best of both options with a refreshing open business model.

Make versus Buy

With “make” you get full control of the equipment and it can be made to exactly what they require. It can be endlessly adapted as you require. The internal engineers are upskilled by working on it. It can work out cheaper, but it can also end up more expensive and take a long time. The company may become dependent on a few engineers not leaving or even one engineer. The company is also at the mercy of the choices made of design tools.

With “buy”, you can be up and running quickly. It should be possible to find a supply of engineers who know the system but it’s expensive. Typically the end product cannot be modified beyond the flexibility it came with. This also results in “vendor lock-in”. The licensing expense never stops or updates stop. At some point the product will be discontinued and the only ones who could support it won’t. The results can be seen in many factories using test equipment running Windows 98 leaving holes in the corporate IT security and a solution which has no further support or software updates.

But it shouldn’t be like this. Devtank offer a third way.

With open source test equipment, it’s possible to get the best of both worlds. Our products can just be purchased and brought in, but at the same time are endlessly adaptable and have no vendor lock-in. As the hardware and software are open source, it can be continued by anyone with the hardware and software skills to do so. Our products are based on Raspberry Pi/ARM and GNU/Linux which means there is no shortage of embedded engineers who could work on it. Though of course Devtank offer support which is lower cost than employing engineers.