gEDA Project and Linux Fund partner to boost gEDA/PCB usability

December 15th, 2008 -- The gEDA Project is pleased to announce that it has partnered with Linux Fund in a fundraising effort targeted to expedite development of gEDA's flagship PCB layout program "PCB". Within this partnership, expert gEDA/PCB developer DJ Delorie has agreed to implement a set of enhancements designed to upgrade PCB's usability and utility for electronics designers, making it an attractive open source alternative to commercial PCB design tools. With this project, gEDA/PCB joins the VectorSection DWG interpreter project as part of Linux Fund's growing open engineering and hardware initiative.

PCB is a twenty year old application. Originally written in 1990 for the Atari ST, the program was ported to Unix in 1994. Over the years, it has been maintained and extended by a series of developers who have added improvements and new features, including the ability to export Gerber RS-274x files, an autorouter, and a GTK port. Mr Delorie is currently one of the chief developers involved with PCB, having become involved with the project in 2002.

DJ Delorie is well known within the open source community as the author of djgpp, a popular port of the gcc compiler to DOS. He is also a long time user of PCB, having used the program to design a net-enabled alarm clock which won second place in Circuit Cellar Magazine's "Microchip embedded control" design contest in 2007. His commitment to work on PCB usability enhancements in conjunction with funding from the Linux Fund represents a major step forward for the gEDA Project, as well as a welcome boost to the open-hardware movement.

gEDA/PCB upgrade work description:

  • Implement forward annotation using action scripts
  • GUI modernization
  • Enhance ability to create and edit arbitrary layer types
  • Develop a new Footprint Editor
  • Update Design Rule Checking

About the gEDA Project
The gEDA Project is a community of open-source developers working on creating tools for electronic design released under the GNU Public License. The project currently offers a mature suite of free software applications for electronics design, including schematic capture, attribute management, bill of materials (BOM) generation, netlisting into over 20 netlist formats, analog and digital simulation, and printed circuit board (PCB) layout.

Besides the core design tools, the gEDA Project has gathered a community of other programmers who work on their own tools while sharing the gEDA e-mail lists, administration, and community support. This extended set of electronics design applications has become known as the "gEDA Suite".

Visit http://geda.seul.org for more information about the gEDA Project.

About Linux Fund

Linux Fund is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that provides financial and supervisory support to the open source software community. Linux Fund raises funds with its line of rewards credit cards and direct donations, and has given over half a million dollars to open source projects since its founding in 1999.

Visit http://www.linuxfund.org for more information about Linux Fund and to help support the gEDA/PCB Project.



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