[IDEA → WIP] Decentralized & federated inventory management
What we need
We need a simple inventory management that keeps track of our material (wiring, devices, microphones, screens etc), their state (working, broken, last checked), their location, their owners (since our pool is made from different projects) and ideally when they are used.
What we tried
While complicated asset management systems exist, they are often too overkill and hard to use. We do not need to store large quantities of items, we do not need to track many purchases, we do not need FIFO queues etc.
In contrary, there are some systems for community-maintained stuff, but they are hard to scale to large quantities. You can't easily keep track of many items and their properties, you can't book 50 things for an event at once, they are more focused to "let's share that one bike and that one tool in the neighbourhood".
What we are planning here
In 2022 we started writing a simple PHP tool that can manage a simple list of items, and adding labels to it.
Our next goal is writing a more complete inventory management solution that allows multiple users and teams to work on shared inventory lists. It should be lightweight to use for hobbyists and powerful enough to manage large amounts of inventory with it.
In the future, the inventory should be shared between instances (like E-Mail works), so you can share some items with another team by sharing it to firstname.lastname@example.org, or request email@example.com to rent some items from them.
We are focusing events at first (that is with scheduling the uses and maybe having some special features like managing mandatory electrical safety checks). However, we want to keep it usable as a generic tools for associations and everyone else who frequently shares material with others and needs a tool for that. So we are looking for your feedback for other use-cases – tell us what you need!
First of all, if you know a solution that might be worth a look, please reach out to us. We do not want to reinvent the wheel!
Secondly, if you have any hints how such a system could be designed, please let us know.
Also if you are interested in funding the development, in testing features, or you have ideas what should be implemented, we're glad to see a network.
Lastly, if you have some spare time and know how to code, let's talk about the design and some requirements and start.
Thank you for reading through!
inventshare is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU Affero General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.
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