Pictures of the beautiful scenery in the game Eve Online.
I’ve been playing EVE online for a while now and was just recently able to upgrade my hardware to truly see the game. This post is pretty simple, I just wanted to show some of the screen shots I was able to get in the last few days, most of them this evening.
Please do not use these images in your other works.
Technology is not your savior, it isn’t even the road to utopia. It isn’t a magic bullet that can cure the world’s woes.
Technology is not your savior, it isn’t even the road to utopia. It isn’t a magic bullet that can cure the world’s woes.
I have come to learn that people want what they want, and technology is just a tool they use. Even in the absence of technology they still try to do what they want. Technology just facilitates what ever they are doing.
So, if a doctor wants to save lives… technology can help.
If law enforcement wants to stop a crime… technology can help.
If a criminal want to steal… technology can help.
If someone wants to blackmail… technology can help.
If someone want to cheat on their spose… guess what… technology can help.
If a person wants to learn… yep technology can help.
Pick anything people want good or bad. Technology can help them do it better if used properly.
I think the problem is people WANT things that are detrimental to themselves and others. It has been that way since the beginning of recorded history. Look at slavery. As far back as history can tell me there have been slaves. Slaves were the OLD form of technology. They could help you do what you wanted to do, better, faster and cheaper. It was just more directly abusing of people, and yet those who did it justified their actions. Technology has helped us distance ourselves from the abuse, but we still do the same things.
So the problem isn’t technology. It is people, they always want MORE, faster, better and cheaper. And they are willing to sacrifice others to do it. Technology just allows them to do it better. Some people want to hurt and destroy others, pick your cause, technology just allows them to do it better.
So… what we are looking at is that people haven’t changed really since we have recorded history. We have always saught what we wanted, and used anything to get it. Including other people, technology, the law, or religion.
Some people are charitable, but for MOST it is a means to an end. They want to feel better about them selves, they expect something in return, even if it is in the after life, or maybe it is on a camera, or maybe a tax deduction, or any other of a dozen reasons. Again the using something to get what we want, and guess what technology can help them do it.
Since the begining of history, people have saught new ane more creative ways to do things that benifit hemselves ussually at the cost of others. So let me ask the following:
Do you think new laws will fix the problem? We (humans) have been making new laws since the begining I’ll wager.
Do you think a “better” technology will fix the problem? Since we invented the plow we keep getting better technology, yet we have the same problems.
Well maybe we need better education… that will fix the problem right? Is our education better than it was in the stone age? Do you think it has made people better? Smarter sure… but better? We have a ton of technology to help people learn.
Do you think the “removal” of opposing forces and bad influences will fix the problem? Ever hear of Hitler he used that kind of logic? Ever hear of ethnic clensing? Would your removal be justified? Would your cleansing be more correct or humane?
The only thing in common with all the history I know is… people. Technologies change, laws change, ideals change, money changes… but it is always people.
So how do you fix the problem of people?
I don’t think there is an answer out there that hasn’t been tried.
This has been my rant about advertising, sparked by Microsoft’s OS tracking and “privacy options” (or lack there of).
I was going through today and checking out the settings in Windows 10. While I was just looking them over I found an option for Privacy. This is something I shouldn’t need to worry about on my personal PC… but Microsoft seems to think differently.
As I read the Privacy settings, it implied that my actions were tracked for Targeted Advertising. What? Why? Why is my OS (that I paid for) selling my usage for advertising? So I decided to disable the option… I toggle the switch that does this and I get a wonderful alert at the top of the screen.
So Let me get this straight. To disable my OS tracking me, I have to turn ON 1st and 3rd party tracking (cookies) and ensure that my browser doesn’t protect my privacy?
Lovely. So to sum it up, to stop your OS from tracking you you have to make sure that your browser can track you instead. That is asinine. This screen should not be labeled Privacy it should be labeled “Privacy violation settings”, you don’t get to “Chose your privacy”. You get to chose HOW your privacy is invaded. Through your OS or your browser.
All in the name of advertising and targeting apps. Neither of which I like. Just allow me to customize and control my own PC… I can tailor it to my usage, I don’t need other people doing what they think I want for me, or providing me what they think I’m interested in. If I’m interested in something I will go out of my way to find it.
Side note, found a project that I’m really beginning to like the idea of. This project called AdNauseam. The goal of the project is to make online advertising worthless to advertisers. It blocks and automatically clicks (in the background) each and every single ad it blocks. Advertisers pay for “impressions” and “clicks”, this makes it look like you click on everything, making it impossible to distinguish what YOU are actually interested in because you’re interested in everything (apparently). Every time it clicks on an ad… someone somewhere has to pay the advertiser for that. By simply clicking on everything you are costing advertisers AND eventually making the advertising worthless for marketing data. Mind you I am not against advertising a product or service, I am against the mass data collection and storage of user information even in an anonymized way. It is never truly anonymous, just more difficult to connect the dots.
I believe in unobtrusive advertising, advertising that tells me about a product or service without taking over my screen, without playing a video that I didn’t ask for, without un-wanted audio. But advertising has become so obtrusive and invasive I go out of my way to make it useless and block it. If I had my way anyone who put an “obtrusive” or “invasive” ad on the internet should be fined $100 per view/click.
Advertising costs YOU money. You are paying for the bandwidth, the cpu time, the electricity to light your screen and power your computer. Why should I pay to generate and see advertisements that I didn’t go looking for? If you are a business owner, advertising on websites (and your PCs) cost you resources, and potentially expose your work, and risk security. According to engadget and arstechnica there have been a number of ad based viruses/malware/ransom ware attacks. Even in big firms. There has even been a phrase coined for this called Malvertising
According to the NY Times, on average more than 50% of your mobile bandwidth is sucked up because of advertising. You know that extremely limited data plan that you are paying for through the nose… more than half of that is paying so you can see ads on your mobile device.
In short, intrusive advertising pisses me off. If I go to a site and I can’t block or prevent the advertising. I leave. I encourage you to do the same. If you run a website, consider your impact on peoples lives, and your own image online. I think advertising makes sites and software look trashy and second rate, and I know I’m not the only person who thinks this.
This has been my rant about advertising, sparked by Microsoft’s OS tracking and “privacy options” (or lack there of). Best of luck to anyone who can stop the insanity which is advertising!
I went through my site and realize I haven’t posted in a while. Life is moving at a million miles an hour it seems. Work has been great, personal life is getting better, and life seems to be moving forward again.
I haven’t had the time to do more 3D printing. Although my printer seems to randomly turn off and back on (fraction of a second) for no apparent reason. I’m thinking there is a short somewhere, but I haven’t had time to track it down. I also plan on buying a raspberry pi and hooking it up with octoprint and hooking up to a webcam. So I can move the printer to my garage and just keep tabs on prints, and even print straight from my pc. (Technically I can print from my PC now, i just have to be next to my printer to do it. I am hoping to do it via my network.)
I haven’t had time for my traditional “deep” thought, or when I have I’ve just wanted to relax. I have taken playing League of Legends again. Although I find the community is awful. I would say 2 out of every 5 games I play I consider uninstalling the game and wonder if it is possible for the human race to be so incompetent, ignorant, and hateful, and still survive the decade as a species. But I find this is not limited to League. I tried to play Hero’s of the Storm and Dota 2 and found people are the same regardless of the game. So, since I like League better than the others I’ve been playing that one.
I have been studying “Clean Code” (https://cleancoders.com/) in my free time, and have learned a lot about professional coding. Which I wish I had been taught or learned much earlier in my professional programming career. But here is to continually learning and getting better!
I have also learned a new programming language! Python is now a part of my stack. I’ve been coding in python for 6 months now, and I still have a lot to learn. But I’m finding I REALLY like the language. It does have it’s short comings, I feel like it isn’t true OOP, but that it is close enough. I am required to use 2.x version of python for my work, but I hear that they have resolved a number of the problems I have in 3.x.
I’ve also been working with Salesforce DX, and looking at a lot of the enhancements they are offering. I don’t know if I’m allowed to say more at the moment, but it looks very interesting.
I’ve had the flu for the last 3 days, and it has been horrible. People! If you are sick, please don’t go to work and spread the sickness. Especially if you work with the public. I can fully understand and appreciate needing money and needing to work, and not having enough sick time etc.. But seriously the flu is awful please don’t spread it if you can help it. That said I’m doing pretty good, feel like I’ve been pummeled in the gut but otherwise ok.
I’m also trying to figure out how to help the world around me, and as I’m looking around I see tons of people’s need, a lot of people who abuse themselves and those around them, and I have a limited amount of resources (time/money/life). I want to help people, but it is hard to not be cynical when you see people who abuse help, and when you know there must be people out there who really need help. So, I’ve been looking for the last few months, and I haven’t found a good answer yet. I also know a lot of people who make a public show of helping others. I’m not kidding they only give help when camera’s are rolling, or someone is keeping track of it. I mean that literally. They either want to be seen in a certain light OR they want the publicity OR something… They see charity as a form of advertising, even when it is personal. That has really turned me off to a lot of the charity stuff recently. When charity is given expecting something in return… it isn’t charity. It’s business. Even if what is expected is being seen a certain way, or positive branding (self or business). If you want me to see you as genuine… give so no one knows and you don’t get anything out of it, that includes tax returns. Sorry that is my soap box for the moment. A group I know has started “pushing” the use of a mobile app to track the hours and money given to charities so they can use it for advertising… and that really churns my stomach. I am glad that people are being helped… but the motives are purely selfish. I haven’t figured out how to reconcile this. I think motives are as important as what you do. But maybe I’m just old fashioned.
I’m beginning to think that Kindle Unlimited is where Amazon throws its bargain books people wouldn’t normally buy…
I have started reading a lot more recently and decided I would give Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited a try. After my first hour, my experience has been dismal at best. EVERY book I have searched for has NOT been available with Kindle Unlimited. Every author I’ve searched for, Every series I’ve searched for, Every title I’ve searched for, they have all not been available with the service… I’m hoping I find some redeeming value in the “free trial” but so far I’m beginning to think that Kindle Unlimited is where Amazon throws its bargain books people wouldn’t normally buy, just to get them to circulate.
Alright, It has been a while since my last post. I’ve been working hard at work AND working on my printer a lot as well. I’ll try to sum this up to make it easy to digest. When I assembled the printer ONE of the screws holding one of the carriages was loose. That thew off the calibration. After it was fixed I STILL had a lot of problems with inconsistent prints. Using the exact same settings, it would print great once, and then fail the next. I have reduced the remaining problems down to the filament I’m using. I’ve seen the diameter range anywhere from 1.9mm to 1.6mm. Usually it is pretty close to 1.6mm, however, some times it will just get larger. When this happens it really screws up my prints. I was able to compensate for this some by slowing down the print, and turning up the heat. This made sure that there were no clogs in the nozzle. When it got thin, unfortunately it would still under extrude. I did not by “cheap” plastic, it was rated pretty good on Amazon. But I will not be buying from that manufacture again. It has cause me a ton of headaches.
The printer has been great. I did get my first nozzle jam, it took about an hour to clear. When I was changing filaments, I took the bowden tube out too slow and the plastic came in contact with the heat break and solidified. I had to disassemble and hand drill it out. As side from the jam (which was my fault), the printer has been amazing. I’ve been trying to test the limits of what it can do and so far I’m very pleased. I think I’ve hit some of those limits, and I’m thinking about modifying the printer to get finer resolutions. I’m thinking about switching to a .4mm nozzle, but for MOST parts the .5mm one I have works fine. I no longer have the headache I had from my last post. I would like to thank the SeeMeCNC people on the forums for being patient with me and helping me figure out what was wrong. They are great folks. Since I got it fixed up, it has been running almost all the time I’m home just to test what it can do before I start making my own parts.
I did switch my software to Simplify 3d and all I can say is Wow! That was a HUGE difference in setup time, calibration, and tweaking. I went from tweaking for DAYS to get a good print to tweaking for an hour or less. It allows me to tweak as much as I want, but the built in defaults for my printer worked right out of the gate. (Some of that tweaking may have been the stupid filament with the variable diameter, but still, I was able to mitigate it to some extent with settings.)
But… all that said, when the filament diameter stays relatively constant I get really good prints. Here are a few I liked:
For the amount of money involved in this machine, I have to admit I’m VERY disappointed so far.
Ok, I’ve been fighting with my SeeMeCNC Rostock Max v3 for quite some time now. I’m a few steps away from throwing it in the trash I’m so frustrated with the thing.
I am typically a very precise person, many of my co-workers and people in my life hate that about me… one of my detracting features. I do make mistakes. They happen if I’m tired or rushed. I have been both of those (at times) on this project, rushed because I was excited, and tired just because there are only so many hours in a day… you can sleep when your dead right?
Because of that I have gone back over this project several times now and I cannot figure out what is off. I cannot get a good first layer to save my life. My prints are coming out inconsistent. Even when I repeat the SAME steps. It is incredibly frustrating. I have checked my measurements, I have checked my clearances, I have checked my tolerances, I’ve made sure everything was tight…. I have no idea what I’m missing. I’ve read the instructions well over 10 times now checking and double checking that I didn’t “miss” something.
My best guess is that the glass is warped… BUT… it is new glass and using a strait edge I can’t “see” any warping. So I’m not sure what that leaves me. I think one side IS warped a bit. Slightly concave, VERY slightly. The other side SEEMS perfectly flat from what I can tell.
If I auto calibrate the printer, and print a test. Then auto calibrate and print a second item. There is no guarantee the second print will be near the same quality (or flawed), and right now they are ALL having some sort of problem. I can print items that are less than 4″ in diameter quite successfully if I tune the crap out of the machine. (It takes me about a day…) But I can’t print anything larger AND if I move the machine or have to take any of the parts of I have to start all over. UG!!!!!
I’ve been asking questions on the forums, but unfortunately I’m usually tired when I get around to typing there so I probably sound like a lunatic. I keep printing and adjusting, printing and adjusting, over and over and over again… trying to figure out what is wrong. I have read everything I can get my hands on about calibrating Delta printers and trouble shooting prints. And so far… I haven’t found it. The forums did help me with the firmware settings, which was nice… but I still have no idea… and no responses about what could be wrong with what I have.
In an attempt to put the machine in ONE place and keep it there I moved it to where it stays and hooked up a Linux desktop I have here at the house up to it. That was not a pleasant experience. The Arduino software detected the printer right off the bat, well once I took care of some permissions issues. (silly Ubuntu and dial up permissions…) But I was NOT able to get Cura to connect or even recognize that a printer was connected. I could query the port, and even talk to it, but Cura… just would not do it. I could not find the setting to tell it how to connect. So after spending 4 hours dis-assembling the nozzle/head unit and carriages looking for any mistakes, and re-assembling, I spent another 2 hours trying to connect a Linux desktop to the printer to actually process and print there without success.
For the amount of money involved in this machine, I have to admit I’m VERY disappointed so far. I admit I broke my glass plate and had to replace it… but aside from that I have made 6 successful prints… and about 30-40+ failed prints. I have spent roughly 4 to 6 hrs every evening since I got it (and weekends) working on this…. The machine looks like it is nicely designed… I do have some gripes… BUT for all that “niceness” I have barely got any good prints yet. I have studied how to find the right temperatures, flow rates, retractions rates, speeds, cooling… and the printer comes preset pretty dang close. But it still won’t print a good first layer for me.
I’ve heard how amazing this printer is. I’ve been going back and making sure everything is right… and so far EVERYTHING has checked out. I’m sure I’m missing something… (otherwise it would be working) But I have no idea what I’m looking for, so I just get to keep trying everything until something works… It might make me a “well rounded person”, or better understand the printing process. But when you have things you want to print it is very frustrating.
Despite my frustration, The last few days I have intentionally taken my time and double measured, and been extra patient with what I do on the printer. I haven’t rushed… despite my desire to. Eventually I’ll find the issue. (Maybe?)
If not I’ll just start printing a my Prusa i3 Mk2… hopefully I can print those parts well enough. I am bent on 3D printing, and I was hoping this printer would be the one that would take me from beginner through the intermediate too the lower rungs of advanced without having to replace… but if I can’t get this started… I’m not sure what to do with it. I still have hope for this printer yet, I’ve spent a lot on it and I’m not about to give up… but it certainly has not been the “fun” project I was hoping for. (Well it was fun to put it together… until there were problems with no foreseeable resolution. I guess if I knew I could do a week worth of work and be good it would be much more fun again.)
a very tired… and moderately frustrated TaggedZi.
Ok, today was day six. I finished the printer and I think it is excellent!! Well, almost. I broke the glass bed so I can’t calibrate or print on it yet 🙁 But here is a picture of the printer, minus the glass plate:
I really like the printer and the design. I have not yet had a chance to PRINT on it yet.
The Pain Points
But this is a review of the assembly process, as you read this please remember I like this printer, these are things I had difficulty with during production:
I found some of the part tolerances were TOO TIGHT there were several parts that were too tight.
- Inserting the heater bed cables in the X axis was the WORST offender. I used every trick I could find to get them through. In the end I put the thermistor cables through with lubricant, and then put the negative power cable through (well lubed…) and even that took an inordinate amount of force. I was deeply afraid I would damage the cables with the amount of force required to make that happen. I spent over an hour trying to get those cables through in various ways. I tried different posts, I tried using s single layer of scotch tape to hold them together, I tried feeding in various orders, I tried pulling, I tried twisting. In the end I used a water based lubricant and a pair of pliers to shove it threw a few mm at a time.
- The screws that hold the face plates on. I know this may seem trivial, but if you only have a hand held L shaped hex wrench and have to mechanically thread them through the plastic pieces that are a bit too tight, it is painful. Attempting to do this is actually what caused me to break the glass over the heating pad. I dropped the piece I was holding and it fell right smack on the glass. Shattering it onto wonderful spider-man web looking shards.
- The screws that hold the stop switch in the Upper Motor Mount Assembly. After putting the first one in I realize there was NO WAY I was going to be able to put the rest in without damaging either the screws, the switches, the assembly, my screw driver, or my hand. So I cheated and used a 5/64th in Drill bit in a hand tool and manually expanded the back half of the hole. That kept it very tight, but made it bearable.
- The EZR Struder was extremely tight especially around the wires. I know they made a relief for the wires but I almost broke the panel putting the motor in the panel and visibly notched the cables. None of the cables were permanently damaged, but I was very worried about it.
- This was an odd one. The spool holder on the top of the machine was WAY too tight to fit into the top assembly holes. It actually damaged the holes on the top of the machine. Nothing serious but cracked it a bit on the inside. And it still wouldn’t go in. I finally had to take a knife and whittle down the width of the feet with a fair amount to get it to squeak in. Even after that it was still tight, but I didn’t feel like it risked damaging anything any more taking it in and out.
There was one place where the videos, the Rambo installation, where they show one assembly then several steps later it show it assembled differently. (if you look at the orientation of the cables on the adapter on the video the red stripe is facing the power connector in the video, and the red stripe is facing away from the power in the picture. Apparently the picture was correct. I assembled it to the video. Fortunately no permanent damage was done. Just a lot of head scratching, and mild cursing. Thanks to the comments for helping there.
The Rambo power connector was another pain point. Although it was not a bad one. I was left to wondering if there was a better way to do that? The points that the main power cables came in at kept pulling out (or the second cable did…). I finally got them all in and staying though.
The power fan is pretty loud. I don’t have a db meter… but it’s louder than anything else in my immediate area. I haven’t printed yet so I don’t know about the operation.
The Good Points
When completed this looks like a professionally assembled machine. Cables, belts, pulleys, and fans are all nicely tucked away. The pulley system LOOKS well thought out. I haven’t used it yet so I can’t confirm its functioning but I like the way it is tucked away. I also like the simplicity it can be reached and maintained. It looks like you can get to most places on the machine fairly quickly with little fuss, with plenty of built in access and open places to reach needed parts. Aside from my few nit pick points above this was actually not that bad to put together. It took some time and patience, but was certainly doable. Don’t let the pain points above scare you, there were a TON of steps that I did not have any problems with. Over all the assembly was well documented or video illustrated.
Once I get the last piece in… my glass bed… I’ll start setting up and see how it goes.
Would you do anything differently? I would have done a better job staging the parts up front. I spent a GREAT deal of time trying to FIND the parts I needed for a job. and then RE-FINDING them when I needed them. I usually keep a fairly neat work space, not desk, but work space. However, with this project I found I was overwhelmed with parts, and they were not always together or easy to find. I would also get a hex bit for my drill and better lighting for my desk. The only other thing I’d do is win the lotto and spend my time working on projects like this :)… But that is something I’ve been working on for years.
Today is Day 4. Yes it has been 2 chronological days since my last post, but 1 day of actual work on the printer. Remember I get to do this between work/life/family.
Today I worked on the base. I hoped to have it done tonight but I just couldn’t do it all. I spent about 5 hrs working on it (I will admit, I did cook dinner, and hang out with kids in there… so take that number with a grain of salt). I did get almost done though.
3 parts really made it take longer.
- Inserting the nylon nuts into all the side pieces. They say it is “easy”, but I couldn’t get them to go in for love or money. I found some of the really tough ones I used an Allen wrench and prying it open just a little bit. I was deathly afraid to damage it so I only applied the barest minimum of pressure to get the nut in.
- The other thing is the brackets that hold the heating base, the nylon nut in that did not go in very far and the screw that holds the blue tabs that hold it down was just a hair too short to get contact, I had to find a way to get the nuts further into the assembly. I ended up using needle nose pliers and putting the screw in a bit and pulling on the had of the screw with the side of the nose.
- Finding all those parts. I know they must have taken a TON of time organizing how all this was pulled and assembled etc. However finding the part called for some times took more time than assembling it. It isn’t that they aren’t labeled, there are just a lot of them, and many of them look similar, and some of them are mixed with other bags. So it just takes time to make sure you have the right thing.
Over all I think this part was very cleaver. They made this very easy for people with some experience to assemble. I have a few friends I would be very comfortable recommending this to. But this would not be for everyone I know. This came out remarkably more stable than I expected, and much lighter than I expected as well. I think (so far) this seems very well designed. I haven’t had a chance to run it and test for other things but for straight layout and assembly so far, with a few side notes, I really like.
One other note, removing all the tape from the wooden (mdf?) parts was quite the chore. Not difficult or awful. Just time consuming, I was tempted to let my kids do it, but I was afraid they would break something… so I did it my self. I also didn’t know if any of the cut out parts were important. I am sure 99% of them are just dross, but there were 4 holes cut in one of the pieces that had holes cut in them… making me wonder if they were important. Since I didn’t know I saved everything. I will say that working with those little cut outs does get black stuff all over too, not a ton, but noticeably, so you don’t want to do this wearing anything important or over you wife’s wedding dress… unless you are hoping to die or get a divorce… or both I suppose.
That’s it for me. signing off…. nanoo… nanoo.