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Posted · Innovation platform

Fusion360 cost money but it was also suggested yea. I think we want something what people can access for free and something which is open. Like you can view it without logging in, but if you want to participate you need an account, just like on the forum.

@Labern, what would you say an 'owner' is?

Is it always the person who started a topic? What if he needs help for 60% of the work but he had a great idea? I think an owner should be able to add another owner if that would mean someone will contribute to a very big part of the project.

Looks like Onshape is something to remember!

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Posted · Innovation platform

I think we want something what people can access for free and something which is open. Like you can view it without logging in

I think an owner should be able to add another owner if that would mean someone will contribute to a very big part of the project.

 

agree on both

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Posted · Innovation platform

Just for the record Fusion 360 is free for students, enthusiasts, hobbyists, and startups

I think that onshape is limited in the number of designs (never tried it more than a few clicks)

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Posted · Innovation platform

Yes, Fusion 360 is free for students, enthusiasts, hobbyists, and startups but we are neither one of those :p plus that is only for 1 year. Than you need to buy a license.

I read that onshape is limited in the amount of private folders or something in that area.

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Posted · Innovation platform

From the Autodesk website:

 

A free 3-year license is available for students, teachers, and academic institutions.

A free 1-year startup license is also available for hobbyists, enthusiasts, makers, and emerging businesses that make less than US$100,000 in revenue per year. At the end of 1 year, you can reselect the startup entitlement or transition to a commercial entitlement.

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Posted · Innovation platform

In onshape you can transfer the ownership to anyone with an account but people without an account can still view it.

You can have unlimited amount of public drawings upto 5gb ( sounds small but is actually heaps.)

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Posted · Innovation platform

Using Moi3D I'm not much experienced with parametric design and constraint sketches. But I'll try one of my recent, small designs with onshape and perhaps fusion to get a feeling.

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Posted · Innovation platform

You would want all the features of github for sure. I feel like this is a dumb question since everyone seems very stoked about this idea but ...What's wrong with github anyway, other than it already exist, is bug free, and it's not owned by UM?

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Posted · Innovation platform

Thank you for your input!

Those points you mentions don't sound like cons to me.

We are in an orientating phase, so every is possible!

We want to avoid making assumptions leading to mistakes, so I don't really think it is a 'dumb question'.

Github has some good features, but it is intended for software projects.

In my original post I asked the question, do we think that involving hardware requires more features than software projects?

In a way most of the projects will probably evolve around digital fabrication and CNC machines so a lot should be able to be shared. But maybe some of you have different experiences or insights. That is what I am after.

So do you think it requires other features?

And why?

We don't need to 'own' or build it, but we do want to host it on our community platform.

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Posted · Innovation platform

I would love to have such a platform, but it would need to have very little "processing overhead". Which means it needs to be unobtrusive and light on features since "making" is the most important thing where most work would be done outside of the platform. Ideally such a platform would simplify communication and organization of joint projects.

Right now I am in the middle of such a joint project (Delta 3D printer) with two other people. Last year we have met here on the forum and planed to build a Delta printer. After some preparation we met in person for a weekend and worked on the printers. We didn't finish them there so everyone of us had to continue working on their own. At that time we used email exclusively to communicate.

This time we decided to build another bigger/better Delta. So far we have used (and are using) the following tools:

 

  • Google Docs for the BOM (part list)
  • Email for communication
  • Whatsapp group for even faster communication
  • Bitbucket Server Git repo for CAD files - modeled with Moi3D
  • Confluence for documentation

 

Hardware projects are not much different than software projects. Since most parts are digitally designed anyway, these can be treated as pieces of code.

I am a big fan of Atlassian software and used to be an user group leader for them. Ideally such a cooperation platform would have the ease of use of Confluence for documentation, robust task management features of Jira, quick communication (+archive with search) of HipChat and code cooperation capabilities of Bitbucket Server.

There is one thing missing though. Printed prototypes will be shared often and a super easy photo sharing feature would be most welcome (maybe even an app that's directly tied in with the platform and uploads photos shot on the phone directly to the selected joint project).

After all everything boils down to organization. When many people work on the same thing, there will be a phase of wild excitement where ideas are thrown around and tested. The greatest challenge would be to have a system that brings some order in the chaos without hampering creativity. On one hand it would be "easy" to build a system with tons of features where users are required to run through a complicated workflow in order to submit new content. Yet this would kill the project for sure.

On the other hand, just the forum and nothing else would allow for too much uncoordinated content and would lead to chaos.

If nothing else, you could start with an Atlassian stack and configure it so it has many unnecessary features disabled. Then test it internally for a small project.

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Posted · Innovation platform

Regarding tools, if you plan on using onshape or Autodesk you are reducing the available pool of contributors or their respective terms and conditions changing suddenly making the software unaffordable to the tinkerers.

If you used FreeCAD and Blender as the modelling tools, you have the best of both worlds (traditional CAD and polygonal modelling), no risk of them becoming unaffordable, and they both run Windows, Mac and Linux.

I use both of them in my daily work for designing products and prototypes. While Blender is far more mature and has an insane amount of modelling tools, FreeCAD is growing by leaps and bounds and is eminently useful.

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Posted · Innovation platform

Or one could use any tool and provide the source files in STEP or IGS. Then any other decent tool could import it.

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Posted · Innovation platform

Or one could use any tool and provide the source files in STEP or IGS. Then any other decent tool could import it.

 

I think this is a better approach. Let contributors use whatever tool they are most proficient in. and just make sure to standardize the file formats that we share with one another. Removing as many hurdles for people to be able to contribute as easily as possible.

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Posted · Innovation platform

Or one could use any tool and provide the source files in STEP or IGS. Then any other decent tool could import it.

 

Of course allowing IGES and STL files as the very lowest level is great, and provided the IGES files are converted into STL for those users who only model with polygons, it should be a reasonable base solution.

But it's only a partial solution, because I frequently find that I need the original files to make rapid changes without too much of a headache. For example, it might be easier to modify a sketch rather than try to add some more geometry on to something or reverse-engineer a shape. Likewise in Blender I make heavy usage of booleans which makes updating dimensions and other changes much easier and will want all the meshes used for the boolean operations present.

There is no perfect solution, I am simply advocated for something that will stand the test of time. FreeCAD and Blender are open source, hence it will always be possible to open any files generated with them provided the older sources are made available or are backed up somewhere.

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Posted · Innovation platform

What are some tools that could be integrated that would facilitate collaboration.

Such as Streaming video meetings with an archive for later access by contributors who come onto the project later in the development timeline.

A file library that folks can check their files in and out of so there isn't any overlap, and so they can request directly in the library view for other contributors to review their work.

Maybe an up voting system for selecting community projects and ideas that have the most excitement or immediate application.

Designating ( giving badges to) members of a project to make them feel like they have more ownership of the roles they are operating in, e.g. Project owner, Lead designer, etc.

A dependency timeline chart thing that would help the community quickly see what is needed next on each specific project in order to move forward.

Maybe sending out weekly updates and notifications of skills that are needed on each project based on the skills and interests that each user has already added to their profile?

A donation system once the product has been developed to give some monetary incentive to the people who contributed to its development.

Sorry if this stuff has already been discussed. I read over this thread a while back and don't remember everything that was in it :)

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Posted · Innovation platform

Or one could use any tool and provide the source files in STEP or IGS. Then any other decent tool could import it.

 

agree
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Posted · Innovation platform

Thanks for sharing, definitely check it out!

Have you used it? What would you say the advantages / USP's are?

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Posted (edited) · Innovation platform

Hi @3DofTom, thanks for sharing! That platform has a lot of similarities of how I imagined such a collaborative platform could look like!

The way different projects are being displayed, the creator and to what percentage it is completed is very nice. Also the tools required / used is useful. The option to apply as well. But besides that it still looks rather closed. Like for example what 15% is finished?

Concrete, what are all the steps and for what steps is the owner still looking for help?

For us we would also need a good viewer, to visualize as many different uploaded files as possible.

But I understand it is still under development. So far it is looking pretty good!

Curious to see what direction this will go.

What does everyone else think of this platform? Things you like / don't like?

@Nicolinux, @Danilius, @UltiArjan, @Foehnsturm, @ivan-lipunov, @Neotko, @Dim3nsioneer, @Didierklein, @Labern?

Edited by Guest

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Posted · Innovation platform

Wow it's awesome !

Being able to participate to projects all around the world sounds amazing !

And that's pretty cool fur students too for practicing and being able to win money at the same time !

I'll bookmark this one (:

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Posted · Innovation platform

Not sure if winning money is part of the motivation of the platform or to participate on it, but I can imagine having a successful project would lead to something. Depending on the complexity and nature of the finished project.

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Posted · Innovation platform

Not sure if winning money is part of the motivation of the platform or to participate on it, but I can imagine having a successful project would lead to something. Depending on the complexity and nature of the finished project.

 

Just talking about students ;)

But yes being able to share a project with everyone who would participate is a huge part of the concept !

I'm not an artist guy, I just know to make technics parts with CAD softwares so it's not for me but I have a lot of friends who'd be intrested !

Some of my interns use 3DS Max for example and that's cool for them !

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Posted · Innovation platform

I think if we would have such an innovation platform it would not be focussed on art, but more on technical parts / projects / solutions. So that should fit perfectly in your alley :)

The Artella platform is focussed on art, but I really like the concept of the platform, not perse the content. (Well I do from a personal perspective, but that is besides the point here:p)

The purpose of such an innovation platform on the ultimaker community platform would be to facilitate innovation and fun in the community. We are lucky with our community members who have all the skill sets they need to finish a project in their own home or their own local area but I can imagine there are a lot of makers amongst us with great ideas but don't have all the skill sets required to finish it.

3D printing can close the gap from digital fabrication to real life products. This allows peer to peer networking on a new level. Since we have such a big community of experts with different skill sets this could lead to some really cool innovations.

Could be about Ultimaker hardware or software, (lets say you want a certain upgrade, the community can help you if they think it would add value) or it could just be completely random / fun.

Whatever the community wants :)

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Posted · Innovation platform

Yeah I understand what you mean !

I agree that would be the fabulous software platform who could connect all Ultimaker (and more) users all around the world and make this technology and community evolve even faster...

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