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The Open Hardware Observatory (OHO)

From OHO - search engine for sustainable open hardware projects


OHO is a search engine for open hardware, open design and maker projects. We crawl the web and make its content searchable for you. Start searching and build a better tomorrow.


OHO seeks to strike a new path for the future of OSH by serving as a meta source for complex open hardware projects.

It follows three main objectives:

  1. Create a crawler-based search engine to find and disseminate complex OSH projects
  2. Provide and curate a wide-ranging directory of complex OSH projects with needed information to assess their level of openness
  3. Build a strong and diverse open hardware community that supports the further development of OHO


This results in the following three products that have been integrated so far as part of OHO:

OHO Search Engine

Using an automatic crawler-based search technique, publicly available project documentation with a particular focus on sustainability are searched for throughout the web, entered into an (expandable) category system and displayed as search results together with preview photos and a short description. Project documentation published under free licenses or where their original developer are in contact with us will be documented in more details especially when construction plans and part lists are available.

OHO Project Directory

An extensive collection of relevant complex OSH projects is available on The OHO Project Directory. The directory consists of:

  • Crawled data sets for complex open hardware projects improving searchability of the projects and their documentation
  • Manually entered and curated data sets for complex open hardware projects reporting on their openness according to product- and process-related criteria

In addition, the directory will create an important database for research on the field of OSH. Currently, anyone interested can already link documentation for existing projects such as photos, videos, texts, comments, CAD drawings, parts lists, etc. or add new projects. Please register here.

OHO Community

As a basis for gathering free technical knowledge and (further) developing the OHO products, it is essential to create, organize and support a broad community of interested parties and participants (organizations, companies and individuals). For this reason, the website itself is an open project, which means that anyone interested is welcome to contribute as follows:

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