An amateur (French amateur "lover of", from Old French and ultimately from Latin amatorem nom. amator, "lover") is generally considered a person attached to a particular pursuit, study, or science in a non-professional or unpaid manner. Amateurs often have little or no formal training in their pursuits, and many are autodidacts (self-taught).


An author is broadly defined as "the person who originated or gave existence to anything" and whose authorship determines responsibility for what was created.


See Creative Commons.


Creative Commons Zero is a license that waives all copyrights attached to a work. Similar to releasing work into the public domain.


One of the basic Creative Commons licenses that only requires that proper attribution is given to the author(s) of the work being used.


One of the Creative Commons licenses that requires that proper attribution is given to the original author(s) and that any derivative should be published using the same license.


To make an identical duplicate of an original.


A style of licensing in which those redistributing the work are required to do so under its original (or a compatible) license.
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Creative Commons

A suite of licenses designed to allow creators and users of works flexibility beyond that offered in traditional copyright.
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Crowdfunding is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising monetary contributions from a large number of people, today often performed via internet-mediated registries.

Do It Yourself (DIY)

Do It Yourself is the practice of doing home improvements and maintenance oneself rather than employing a professional.

Do It With Others (DIWO)

Do It With Others is somehow the social approach to DIY. The idea here is to build things by sharing knowledge, usually in a space such as makerspace or fablab that encourages these practices.


See Free/libre and open source software

Free/libre and open source software

Stands for Free/Libre Open Source Software. Software which has a viewable, modifiable source. It can be modified and redistributed.
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Since free software is often associated with gratis, the libre French word is preferred. Open source and free/libre being similar but the later cares about ethics and philosophy behind it.

Free/libre software

A term describing software which is made available under licenses permitting users to not only run it, but to examine its code, redistribute it and modify it.
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GNU General Public License (GPL)

A license originally intended for use with software, but now used for other applications. Made famous the principle of Copyleft, requiring those using GPL licensed work to license derivatives similarly.
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  1. A person who enjoys exploring the details of programmable systems and how to stretch their capabilities, as opposed to most, who prefer to learn only the minimum necessary. RFC1392, the Internet Users' Glossary, usefully amplifies this as: A person who delights in having an intimate understanding of the internal workings of a system, computers and computer networks in particular.
    The Jargon File

  2. An expert or enthusiast of any kind. One might be an astronomy hacker, for example.
    The Jargon File

  3. One who enjoys the intellectual challenge of creatively overcoming or circumventing limitations.
    The Jargon File


The noun license refers to that permission as well as to the document recording that permission. A license may be granted by a party ("licensor") to another party ("licensee") as an element of an agreement between those parties. A shorthand definition of a license is "an authorization (by the licensor) to use the licensed material (by the licensee)."


A maker is usually a white male with a subscription to Make Magazine. This person could also just be a regular attendee of a makerspace.


A lightweight markup language, designed to describe rich text features (styles, lists, links, etc) in plain text files.
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Open hardware

Hardware which follows the same principles as F/LOSS, including publicly available, freely licensed schematics.
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Open source


Open standards

A standard which is available for viewing and implementation by any party, often at no monetary cost.
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A professional is a member of a profession or any person who earns their living from a specified activity. The term also describes the standards of education and training that prepare members of the profession with the particular knowledge and skills necessary to perform the role of that profession. In addition, most professionals are subject to strict codes of conduct enshrining rigorous ethical and moral obligations.


In the abstract, property is that which belongs to or with something, whether as an attribute or as a component of said thing. In the context of this article, property is one or more components (rather than attributes), whether physical or incorporeal, of a person's estate; or so belonging to, as in being owned by, a person or jointly a group of people or a legal entity like a corporation or even a society. (Given such meaning, the word property is uncountable, and as such, is not described with an indefinite article or as plural.) Depending on the nature of the property, an owner of property has the right to consume, alter, share, redefine, rent, mortgage, pawn, sell, exchange, transfer, give away or destroy it, or to exclude others from doing these things, as well as to perhaps abandon it; whereas regardless of the nature of the property, the owner thereof has the right to properly use it (as a durable, mean or factor, or whatever), or at the very least exclusively keep it.


An amateur who engages in some activity at a professional or near-professional level of skill or competence.

Public domain

The legal status of a creative work for which the copyright (or other rights restriction) has expired. A work in the public domain can be used by anyone, for any purpose, without restriction. Licenses such as the Creative Commons CC0 license emulate public domain.
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To take (something) from someone without permission or unlawfully.
Collins Dictionary


A file format for CAD files, geared towards representation of 3D objects. It has become the "de facto" format for 3D printing.
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