Cookies, cameras, and collaboration

Open source is like sharing recipes

The gift that keeps on giving

Part of being human is teaching others what you know

Imagine baking cookies for your friends. They eat them, and they love them, and the moment passes. It’s a nice moment, but once the cookies are eaten and enjoyed, it is over.

Next imagine that you bake the same cookies, but you also share your recipe, giving your friends the power to bake the cookies themselves at home, whenever they want. That is an enduring gift, one that keeps giving. And if they want a little more chocolate, or less powdered sugar, they can tweak the recipe.

The next time you all get together, there will be more cookies, and a wider variety as well.

Open source works much the same way. We don’t just share the finished product, but the expertise to reproduce it, and the freedom to tailor it to our own wishes and wants.

The cookie

The Yellow Dog Bread Co. Peanut Butter Cookie

In the spirit of open source, Yellow Dog Bread Co. in Raleigh NC, shares this simple and delicious peanut butter cookie recipe.

This cookie recipe is a classic, and my favorite. It was a cookie that my Mom made for me as a kid, and one of the first things I learned to bake!

Tanya Andrews
Head Baker, Yellow Dog Bread Co.

Baking tools for recipe


  • Hand or bowl mixer
  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Parchment paper
  • Cookie sheet
Ingredients for recipe


  • Butter
  • Sugar
  • Brown sugar
  • Peanut butter
  • Vanilla
  • Eggs
  • Flour
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
Cookie dough


  • Mix together
  • Scoop out in round ball on cookie sheet
  • Bake 12–15 minutes.

See recipe for full details.

The camera

The Raspberry Pi digital camera recipe

A Raspberry Pi kit is like a set of ingredients, and the instructions on how to make it into a digital camera are like a recipe.

What makes Raspberry Pi open source is that the recipe (the how-to) is available to everyone, for free. Sharing knowledge and expertise, so that anyone can learn from, understand, and modify a design, is the organizing principle of open source.

It works with cookies, and it works with technology. Create your own Raspberry Pi camera, the same one the girls of CO.LAB use.

Raspberry Pi camera parts unassembled

Understanding open source

Find out more about what open source and cookies have in common.

The open source way

Open source is more than just a way to create software. It's about building things without limitations. And it's about forming new communities without boundaries.

At Red Hat, we're committed to showing what people can do when they make things in the open. Because when we share, we thrive.