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Beautifully Simple Gifs Capture How Open Source Inventions Have Changed The World

Open source IT company Red Hat have worked with multidisciplinary creative Mihai Badic to create a series of low-poly GIFs celebrating a number of inventions created using open source methodology. The GIFs document inventions including Wikipedia, the Polio vaccine and Tesla Cars, all of which embrace a sense of community to share knowledge, technology and healthcare with as large an audience as possible. Founded in 1993, Red Hat are the world’s leading open source IT company. Red Hat works closely with the open source community, contributing to the community-powered innovation that is advancing many of the world’s top open source software initiatives.

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Bifocal Glasses

Considererd by some to be the founding father of open source, American inventor and politician Ben Franklin never patented any of his numerous inventions, writing that “as we enjoy great advantages from the inventions of others, we should be glad of an opportunity to serve others by any invention of ours.” Bifocal lenses are one of his most famous inventions, helping millions improve their vision.

e-NABLE Prosthetic Limbs

Set up with the aim of providing free prosthetic limbs for people around the world, e-NABLE matches designers and recipients, sharing open source designs for simple prosthetic limbs. Leading open source company Red Hat produced

a film on e-NABLE to help spread awareness of its work.

Open Source Malaria

A group founded with the aim of finding new, collaborative ways to fight malaria, OSM worked with Australian students to release an open source version of the drug Daraprim, helping the drug reach those most in need. This was inspired by Martin Shkreli increasing the price of the drug by 5,000% in the face of high demand.


Architecture company Paperhouses provides free architectural plans from top architects to the public for free. These plans can be modified or changed to suit anyone’s needs, and Paperhouses aims to provide world class architecture and design to as many people as possible.

The Polio Vaccine

Licensed in 1955 by Jonas Salk, the polio vaccine helped cure the a disease which had seen several epidemics in the

20th century, causing paralysis in around 20,000 children every year in the US. Salk refused to patent the vaccine. Over 80m people worldwide donated to help ensure the vaccine reached as many people as possible and greatly reduce cases of Polio.

Tesla Cars

Co-founded by PayPal entrepreneur Elon Musk in 2003, Tesla Motors shared all the patents and plans for its electric vehicles in 2014, in the interest of helping advance electric vehicle technology as quickly as possible. This bold move has seen Tesla allow anyone to benefit

from its work in the field of ecologically sound vehicles.

Tesla Coil

Nikola Tesla’s invention helped pave the way for electricity being freely available in homes, helping control electrical flow and ensure electrical devices can be used safely at a variety of divergent currents. Plans for Tesla Coils are freely available through open source platforms, helping teach students around the world about electricity and its uses.


Founded in 2001 by Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia is the world’s largest encyclopedia, and can be written and read by anyone, embracing a truly open source approach to knowledge.

There are currently over 40m articles on Wikipedia (over 5m in English), with under 50 employees relying on a network of around 140,000 regular contributors to maintain the site.

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