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Comment PCs in the 80's (Score 1) 348

I think the best comparison we have to the current market in 3D printing is the early PC market. TRS-80, Apple II, Commodore, and similar. We are hitting where the cost is becoming affordable, but the user experience of most is inconsistent at best, and the time spent is usually not worth the return for many users.

Content is one question, do most people want to generate their own unique content or do they want the equivalent of a template to create new things?

Even if they have the content, do they have enough to consistently print in order to purchase a printer for themselves and learn to use it?

I'm working on one approach to the existing market, starting with the hardware, but will be building up the software more as we go. The MakiBox is the world's least expensive 3D printer, but also the most simple to assemble and maintain. We've gotten it down to where the assembly takes around 3-4 hours for most users and will see that go down with the final production design revision. Initial prints usually come out the first time, since settings are consistent between printers, which reduces a lot of the initial testing and calibration with the less expensive printers available.

The next target for us will be to see how to get the technology to where it is useful for the consumer markets. It will take another generation of development to get the hardware to that point, and we will be looking at a lot of different ways that software drives the work flow. I don't believe it is any one piece that is lacking, but a whole ecosystem that will emerge.

Comment Re:I don't want to say it's not serious (Score 1) 539

Actually, looking at the photo, I wonder if it was just the workers covering their faces instead of taking naps.

Myself, I've been over here for about 10 years doing stuff related to manufacturing, and I agree with the above post. There are good things and bad things about all of it, but in general it is improving. Since I've been coming here, I've seen the general living and working conditions improve, wages go up, and factories having to relocate further from the border to be able to get a sufficient supply of workers because the workers have new opportunities closer to home.

Now, we are considering Vietnam and other places for manufacturing since China is now too expensive for many products. Want to guess what the conditions will be like there?

Comment Appcellerator Titanium (Score 1) 296

I'm surprised that no one mentioned Titanium, which is an Open Source alternative to AIR that lets you package up native apps for all of the mentioned platforms.

The UI is CSS based, and you can combine several scripting languages (Python, Ruby, PHP) along with compiled modules to handle most general application development.

Comment Re:August (Score 1) 1146

My Advice...don't get married. It's a trap.

What happens when you get married:

Are you actually married, or are you just saying what sounds like might happen?

If you have a good relationship, the opposite can also be true.

1. Sex stops 2. She get's fat (probably you too)

Let me rephrase that for ya: Sex stops because you both got fat and can't be bothered.

My wife is in better shape than when I first met her because we've worked together to get her out of jobs that have excessive hours so that she can go to Yoga and other things to take care of herself more.

Sex is a two way street, if you are appealing to her, she will be just as interested as before. It takes work, you have to keep things fresh, everyone gets tired of eating the same thing all the time (puns intended).

3. All your money starts disappearing for no apparent reason.

Money should be clear and open, otherwise there will be doubts or disputes or just unspoken stress. However, yes, there are a lot of expenses that you might not have had when you were living in your mom's basement. Take some time to help with budgeting and understand where the money is going.

4. You will be surrounded by strange and insufferable relatives from some place you have never heard of.

I rarely see her relatives, even though we are in the same city as her parents. But, I get along just great with her family, either way, and I see just enough of them to keep it that way. If you are a good sport about this, it will generally help to keep her happy (if she likes to see family frequently). Just have a reasonable discussion if it becomes too much.

5. You will get to drive the old car.

If driving the old car makes any difference to you, then find an old car that you like.

6. Gaming did you say? That won't last long. "I can't believe you are going to play on the computer AGAIN. You just played last week!"

Just be clear about your priorities and make compromises that are acceptable to both people. Living together before getting married can help a lot in this area.

7. She will start asking you if she looks fat, despite the fact she is perfectly aware of #2

If she is fat, then figure out how to inspire her to get back into shape. It may involve you needing to get into shape, changing your diet, or doing things that she should be doing. Moobs may be par for course, but loosing them would be healthy for you in the long run.

8. She won't cook (See #1) and she won't be able to make a decent dinner.

If you know how to cook, then teach her. If neither of you know how to cook (because your mom did it for you each day), then learn together. It is OK to grow together and do things together when you are married. My wife barely knew how to burn eggs when I first met her, now she can generally make most anything and not burn, over-salt, or generally bung it up. It was an opportunity for us to spend time together and I was able to teach her something I enjoy.

9. You will have to leave the house when her literary friends come over to discuss the life analogies in some gay French author's book.

Tit for tat, boys night out, no problem.

10. LAN parties? No Fucking Way in her house!

This gets back to establishing priorities, a relationship is a two-way give and take. You should still be able to do what is important to you. Again, I would highly recommend living together before hand to really get this sort of thing established.

The good things about marriage are that it gives you a partner in life. Someone that you can rely on to get your back. When things don't work out, you know that there is someone that will understand.

If you don't feel like getting married will actually benefit both of you, then think twice about doing it.

Comment Re:iRex iLiad (Score 3, Informative) 167

I second this. I've got one and use it all the time. It is really excellent for taking your library with you, and it doubles as a notebook (a book to take notes in, not a notebook computer). The wifi works OK, but can be finicky. This is one of the only e-ink devices with a Wacom digitizer for taking notes and annotating documents. The software has been opened up and there is some community development Open Iliad, but you will find most of the active discussions and news on the forums.

It is hackable to extend the battery life to several days, and it supports CF flash, SD, and USB memory. The USB port can also be used for running a USB light or hooking up an external keyboard. For updating, it is possible to use SSH to connect to it, and then just rsync or whatever you want.

Since I've gotten this, I've started being able to read many books that are available for free as a CC licensed digital download. Cory Doctorow is a good example.

The cost is higher than similar readers due to the digitizer and wifi and *most importantly* the fact that it is a full A5 sized screen (8" diagonal). I've compared this to the smaller Sony reader, and the additional screen space is particularly valuable for reading PDFs since they do not re-flow the text to fit the screen.

Comment Re:Let me rephrase (Score 1) 221

If you are running on windows already, you can use the free VM that MS provides for this exact purpose:

For testing a single site, I've found that I can use as little as 200MB of RAM for the image to run with. Which is pretty good, since that is still 1/5 of what I have available.


Submission + - China won't license new Internet cafes (

dteichman2 writes: While regulators investigate the Internet's impact on young people, China will not be licensing any new Internet cafes. Investigators will evaluate cafes and look for those that improperly rent out their licenses or fail to properly register the identities of customers. Government authorities worry that the Web may provide children with access to gambling sites, sexually explicit material, and violent video games. Chinese President Hu Jintao has ordered officials to clean up 'Internet culture.'

Submission + - Technique to turn all blood into type 0

davidwr writes: Is this the end of type-O blood shortages? In an article published in the journal Nature Biotechnology, researchers figured out how to make bacterial enzymes turn type-A, -B, and -AB blood into type O blood, or "universal red blood cells." From the abstract:

The enzymatic conversion processes we describe hold promise for achieving the goal of producing universal RBCs, which would improve the blood supply while enhancing the safety of clinical transfusions.
Related story.

Submission + - OpenOffice 2.2 Released

xsspd2004 writes: "

The Community on March 29 announced the release of a major upgrade to OpenOffice: version 2.2. The group claims that with upgrades to its word processor, spreadsheet, presentation, and database software, the free office suite provides a real alternative to Microsoft's recently-released Office 2007 product."

Make it right before you make it faster.