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Blog

PCB art; the 'oshwart' token

Saar Drimer

One of the reasons I wrote PCBmodE was to explore the artistic elements of PCB design. From the nearly ubiquitous, traditional, purely-functional view of PCB manufacturing, I wanted to move to functional, yet visually pleasing board design. There are a lot of elements to play with: silkscreen, soldermask, FR4 substrate, copper, and illumination.

I spent an hour sketching a board to demonstrate these possibilities on paper, and another hour designing it with PCBmodE. Here's what it looks like in PCBmodE and in 'gerbv':







While it doesn't look like it in the figures above, the design is meant to really come alive when light is shown through the board and then the open source hardware logo becomes distinct. The logo's shape isn't meant to be recognised when simply looking at the board sitting on a table, from either side. I hope it'll come out as my brain sees it.

Anyway, I'll send this board out to manufacturing tomorrow sometime. Until then, the first two people to tweet (@boldport) asking me for the board get it for free (I'll cover shipping).