The folks at BoldPort have created PCBmodE, free open source software for designing printed circuit boards, but with an artistic perspective. Traditional EDA tools are designed from an engineering perspective, whereas PCBmodE treats the PCB as a creative palette. They aim to give you freedom to express your design with all the tools of the medium.
We wanted to create circuit boards that have curvey traces, meandering paths, and multiple soldermask layers, so we developed PCBmodE (say “PCB mode”), an open source Python software that unshackle us from the constraints imposed by traditional PCB design tools. We use the power of Inkscape – the leading open source vector graphics editor — to achieve any shape imaginable. Together with our powerful back-end tools, we can manufacturable beautifully functional boards.
They’ve posted about several of their example boards including pieceof (pictured above), a Raspberry Pi daughterboard called shimmy, and a tribute board dedicated to Bob Pease. This is a really neat approach to building circuit boards, and it looks like it has a lot of potential.