Another Conventions Cluster

Thread Starter


Joined Dec 10, 2016
Obviously I have too much time on my hands so I am trying to use it to advance a long term project idea. I appeal to the learned community for answers to simple questions that don't just jump out at me.
This questions relates to reference designs. My only analogue is the open source/FOSS software community where licensing is hotly debated. One can easily find articles on the love/hate relationship electronics designers have with reference designs...for obvious IP reasons.
The questions are:
1. Are reference designs freely available for use or should they be considered copyright IP?
2. Is it considered good/bad form to approach a reference design creator about licensing? Is it common practice?
3. Does it matter that I intend to make the project open (available for reproduction/use)?
4. Would this community consider copy-left licensing of a design/product a faux pas? If not, why hasn't this been done?
That's probably enough for now with this final question:
5. Would an OS/FOSS licensed project be interesting as a means to further the art to anyone other than myself?
Thanks in advance.