Quality sharing best practices for Open Science Hardware
This guide is a result of collaborative efforts by members of the
Open Science Hardware Movement.
DOCUMENTATION is key. Best practices to ensure reproducibility:
- think about your audience - tailor documentation and design to them e.g. education, DIY, peer scientists, professional
- indicate purpose of documentation to manage expectations e.g. proof of principle vs. easy to make in educational workshop
- document along functionality and include meta information about design decisions
- connect all pieces of information well (using documentation tools like DocuBricks or linking them)
- include design files!
- name files intuitively and in detail
- instruction steps should be minute and explicit
- include a lot of media such as explanatory diagrams (very useful!), videos and pictures
- include calibration and testing instructions at modular points
- test your instructions without giving additional information - peer review
- bonus to let it go viral: include thoughts on possible improvements and modifications
DocuBricks provides an easy access to these practises.
DESIGN FILES best practices to ensure usefulness:
- provide design files in an open format wherever possible, see open source hardware definition
- share modifiable design files in addition to build files (provide more than only STL, PDF, DXF files or similar)
- design the project to be easily adaptable for common differences (metric vs imperial) and adaptations, ideally make parametric
- utilise asymmetric design to make parts fit together uniquely and avoid miss-assemblies
- name files with a clear name, material specs and number of pieces