Nice Job, Big Roll Out

 
#1

DJ,

Great job on a big roll out. I missed the live presentation, but got caught up on the YouTube recording. Here are my 2 cents.

I am speaking from a USA perspective. I think you have created a great resource for adults, kids and schools, but as any Revolutionary idea, you may be ahead of your time. Gearing towards schools is a wonderful concept, but here in the US, with federal budget cuts, schools don't have enough teachers to teach, let alone a budget for 3d printers. There are a few who get donations of used machines, but not on the whole. There are some robotics courses being taught, but many schools have after school robotics clubs where money is raised so they can buy materials and build a bot.

The 3d printing evolution is just starting because 24 year patents the "big three" had, just ran out a few years ago and now everyone and their brother are cranking machines for the consumer, for better or for worse. In general the hobbiests who are buying these printers, are just simply supporting the evolving machines. In the end people will want machines with bigger foot prints and higher resolution prints and in general reliable functioning machines.

Where am I going with all this? I suspect there are many scratching their heads on this site and in general the consumers who bought the EZB, wondering how this release will effect, them. Unless you own a 3 d printer or have a friend or uncle with one, it won't. Until 3d printers and the material they use, get to true consumer pricing ( around $200), and they are a one button push to print device, the technology will continue to be an expensive hobbiests-only machine.

I believe the success of the EZ board has always been and should continue to be a unique, powerful and easy to use robot core . My fear is the novelty of the 3d printing may have been a bull in the road, and taken away from evolving the EZB functions, which in my opinion are unique and one of a kind. As the Revolution unfolds, I hope that new functions will begin once again popping up and the EZB continues to Revolutionize robotics.

Keep up the fantastic work!

#2

I agree with most of that, if not all of that however, to add...

The latest update wasn't only 3D printing related. There have been improvements to the code. I'm sure I read that DJ said it was a complete rewrite which meant things like the camera etc. now operate better. There are also some smaller fixes and a few features which I know I will use (advanced/basic mode, always hiding debug etc.)

While they may sound like minor updates to the software and control it does show me that these are still being worked on, improved etc. and that the 3D side hasn't been the only focus.

As far as 3D printing goes, the feature for community print is there too, so you don't necessarily need to have a printer yourself. If it's not been included (I'm not sure, I barely touched the 3D bits yesterday) then I would suggest having it possible to save the STL files for sending to services like Shapeways and 3dPrint-UK etc. so again, no printer necessary.

Kinect was mentioned prior to release, I believe this will be integrated soon for use on robots. And mindwave was added. So again, the 3D side, while being the main selling point recently isn't the only focus.

I lost my train of thought...

Oh yeah, the smaller EZ-B too, that's coming.

#3

Yup totally got those points and was I aware of those improvements. I'm very much looking forward to the kinect update. I think that has the potential to be a really cool addition. The kinect 2 will be release soon and uses a different approach to seeing depth, and quite a bit more resolution. tracking multiple people etc. should be a marked improvement. The smaller EZB will be filling my shelves, when released.

Another great announcement from DJ was that Mattel or at least an employee from them and a couple of other corporations were interested in incorporating the EZB into their products or future products and that is exciting news for DJs company.

#4

As long ad Dj never lets a big corpoartion step on his dreams that's awesome.

#5

EZ-Robots now has some top class staff on board, I don't see anyone stepping on anything Smile

@fxrtst check out the topic Face Recognition Working On EZ-Builder Winky

#6

IMHO - 3d printing is right now what the internet was in 1985-9. When I chose commodore over Nintendo everyone thought I was dumb. Now I'm the Guy they call when there precious machines have issues ;-)

#7

Rich, I've been in remote locations working and just getting back to the forum on occasions, and I really missed a big one. That thread is amazing and exciting. I hope to see some or all of that available soon.

@ Antron , you are correct I feel the same way. It will evolve over the next ten years. And I started with a Texas Instruments TI-99a and then onto the Amiga platform. I just aged myself *stress*

#8

Heh I remember those TI-99s. My first was the Atari 400 and a cassette tape drive. Membrane keyboard. Oh what fun!

#9

I feel young again Smile I don't remember those, were they before the Sinclair Spectrum 48k (not the rubber keyed one, mine was the one after that but before the 128k +2 with built in cassette tape player)

10 Print "Hello World"
20 Goto 10

Grin

#10

I started with a Vic 20... Rich's code above would work on it. ;-)

Yes, the Revolution is a bit of a downer. I was hoping more for the new mini board than anything.

I still want to grab a 3D printer but the wife says we need a new roof first on the house.

I'll try the "We can print shingles on the 3D printer" route but don't think she'll go for it. Grin

The 3D printing stuff is great but I don't think the majority of our forum members are there yet.