Shared posts

06 Feb 18:00

The PIRX one Debuts

by General Fabb

PIRX 3D has launched the PIRX 1.0, a very interesting consumer 3D printer. 

We first encountered PIRX at last fall’s London 3D Printshow, where we were impressed with their experimental color 3D printing prototype. That capability does not appear to be included in this announcement, as the “one” is a monocolor 3D printer. 

The attractive filament extruding machine has some impressive statistics. In its generous 210 x 270 x 210 build volume, it can print layers as small as 0.03mm (30 microns). A wide variety of materials are supported due to the included heated print surface; PLA, Nylon, PS, Laywood, Ninjaflex, ABS and more can work in this machine. 

According to PIRX 3D, the machine can print at “high speed”. Although we’re not sure of the exact speeds, the machine is built from “high-quality parts, custom made linear guides and optical Z end stops”, so it’s likely this is true. Regardless, the prints look pretty darn good, as you can see here. 

The key feature of the PIRX 1.0 is automatic bed leveling. Here’s how it works: before print commences, a sensor checks the bed height at several positions. From these measurements, the software understands the tilt of the bed, even if only slightly tilted. Then the first layer print is dynamically adjusted by raising and lowering the bed very slightly to compensate for the tilt as the extruder moves about. This is a feature that should be included on every 3D printer. 

What’s missing? Just the color printing we saw in the prototype. But before you can do that, you must sell the “basic” machine. It won’t be surprising if they announce a color feature on future machines, but for now, you can order a PIRX 1.0 for only €1200 (USD$1360). 


04 Feb 18:00

colorFabb Announces Carbon Fiber Filament

by General Fabb

Netherlands-based colorFabb introduced an incredibly powerful new 3D printer filament today, based on carbon fiber. 

The new material, cryptically named colorFabb XT-CF20, is a co-polyester based on their custom Amphora polymer. Amphora, jointly developed by colorFabb and Eastman Chemicals, is a new polymer specifically designed for use in 3D printers. Now they’re leveraging this substance by adding carbon fiber.

Like other hybrid specialty filaments, the XT-CF20 is a mix of Amphora and in this case, “no less than 20%” carbon fiber material. It prints in the same manner as other 3D printer filaments, yet produces objects with significantly improved engineering performance. Yes, they’re stronger. 

colorFabb indicates the new material is “twice as stiff as PLA” yet is not brittle. Like other Amphora-based materials, XT-CF20 is very low odor during printing. 

The strength of the new material permits extended uses, particularly for parts experiencing mechanical stress. Here we see an RC car developed with parts printed in XT-CF20. Note the heavy stress components, which might easily break with other materials. Certainly you can break XT-CF20, but it will take more effort to do so as compared to previous colorFabb filaments. 

Appearance-wise, XT-CF20 has a flat, matte black finish and is offered only in this color. That’s not really a drawback as the use of this new material is likely for mechanical parts where color is not so important. 

Any drawbacks? Only one, according to colorFabb, who say XT-CF20 is somewhat more abrasive than other filaments, and thus may introduce additional wear effects on your hot end. Specifically, they recommend using a stainless steel or hardened copper hot end instead of the more commonly found brass hot ends. 

Pricing? Expect a premium price for this material: €50 (USD$57) gets you a spool of 750g. Available now for preorder at their online shop; shipping expected in late February. 

Via colorFabb

02 Feb 05:01

A Shot In The Dark

by jon


Nine out of ten doctors agree, anti-vaxxers are morons. The tenth doctor also agrees. So does the eleventh, twelfth and the War Doctor. The Valeyard could not be reached for comment.

We are now selling these brand new phone cases! Designs include Bunnies Monolith, Cornelius Snarlington, Dungeon Divers and more. Check ‘em out.


02 Feb 00:00



This is relevant to both my interests, and day to day life the past week...

ACCESS LIMITS: Clients may maintain connections to the server for no more than 86,400 seconds per day. If you need additional time, you may contact IERS to file a request for up to one additional second.
04 Feb 19:41

ISIS targets the Pilots of the Airwar

by John Robb

I highly recommend reading everything on Global Guerrillas from the past couple months or so, this is John Robb at his best. He's been attempting to cover sustainable living for awhile now on his other blogs, but comes across as annoyingly repetitive (even though he has a lot of good points there). However, this is his element, and he seems to be one of the very few people actually Paying Attention in this area.


ISIS executed (burned to death) a Jordanian pilot this week.  To maximize the impact of the event, ISIS released a slickly produced video of the event.  The video was a "complete trial" that included >>

  • An interview with the pilot (the "testimony").
  • Some footage of western airplanes blowing things up (the "crime").
  • The brutal execution of the pilot (the "punishment").

Censorship as a Non-Strategy?

What was the west's response?  Censorship.  Here's a full version of the video I've found (it won't last long). The US government is putting on Web hosts around the world to remove videos like this.  So, it will be censored and removed soon.  Censorship isn't a smart strategy.

  • Censorship turns the video into "secret knowledge."  Accessing it in defiance of dictates of a state adds to its allure, particularly for young people targeted by ISIS.  
  • Censorship displays a complete misunderstanding of how online discussion works.  IF it had been allowed online, it would have ignited tens of thousands of discussions required to turn this into learning event.    
  • Censorship gives the impression that the West is weak and in retreat.  The danger is that weakness invites aggression.

ISIS targets the Air War

The ex CIA/DoD guys on the major media networks, didn't have much to say about the event.  Here's some more thinking:

  • Media:  ISIS is mindlessly brutal.  JR: a more insightful analysis shows that these brutal punishments (Christians would call them "old testament" punishments) are taken from the pages of the Quran.  They are specifically selected to recruit Muslims schooled in scriptural literalism by pointing out that modernist Islam ignores scripture when inconvenient.  This punishment was specifically selected for its brutality because the "crime" was push button bombing (the US claims this air war has killed ~6,000 members of ISIS).
  • Media:  This execution was unjustified.  The pilot was innocent.  JR:  The video spent quite a bit of time justifying the execution.  In parallel, ISIS tied the morality of airstrikes to the morality of suicide bombing by offering to trade the pilot for some prisoners in Jordan.  That was successful, Jordan confirmed this connection by immediately executing these prisoners in retaliation for the death of the pilot.  
  • Media:  ISIS wants to intimidate the west.  JR:   Not really.  ISIS had a more specific target in mind.  They are trying to intimidate the pilots of the air campaign.  At the end of the video, ISIS offers 100 Gold Dinars (~$18,000) for the heads of specifically named Jordanian pilots they consider criminals.  By personalizing this, they have just pierced the veil of anonymity that protects the pilots that make push button air warfare possible.



PS> Fox video has the full video up.

02 Jan 17:27

GG Update - January 2, 2015

by John Robb

Some items of interest:

  • The random darknet shopper.  A bot with a budget to randomly purchase items on darknet sites.  It had a budget of $100 in bitcoins to spend every week.  Here's what it bought.  BTW, the law is fairly squishy on bots that break the law.   Here's a Hungarian passport it bought.  --> This is an automated way to grief a specific individual (CEO, Judge, etc.).


  • Nanodegrees.   An attempt by Udacity to unbundle education so that you can learn just what you need.   This would only be of value if going to college was about education.  It's not.  Innovation like this might be possible within new economic networks (likely tied together by blockchains to prevent spoofing/scams).

  • Swatting.  Is there an upside to the militarization of the US police system?  There is if you want to attack a person using something called swatting.  Swatting is a fake call to 911 that prompts the police to send SWAT to take down the target's address. Swatting has been around for a looong while but it's only recently become a national epidemic (we don't now how bad it is because the FBI doesn't track statistics on it = who could have guessed that?).  

  • Stampedes.   Crowds are more likely to turn deadly when trying to enter a venue than exit it.  Why?  One reason is that entry is often restricted to collect tickets/etc or control timing (think Walmart on black Friday).  Exit options are often more fluid and open.  Another reason is that crowds often surge forward when there's reason to believe they are missing an opportunity (as we saw in the Shanghai stampede on new years night that killed 36 people).   

  • ....  Art vs. ISIS

28 Dec 15:30

*Google “Material Design”...

29 Dec 09:56

wetheurban: DESIGN: Totally Accurate LED Lamp Mimics The...


DESIGN: Totally Accurate LED Lamp Mimics The Moon

Japanese design practice Nosinger has created the LED light ‘Moon’.

Read More

31 Dec 18:59

prostheticknowledge: Face Hacking Follow-up demo of the Omote...


Face Hacking

Follow-up demo of the Omote real-time facial projection mapping project by nobumichiasai featuring the creators - video embedded below:


More Here

nobumichiasai has a Tumblr blog here

02 Jan 01:35

31 Dec 03:40

The Answer Is On Your Shirt

30 Dec 19:00

Crazy New 3D Printing Filaments Available

by General Fabb

We noticed several rather unusual 3D printing filaments are now available for you to try out. 

M3D offers what they call “Chameleon Filament”. Why so? Because it actually changes color! They offer several different Chameleon filaments: 

  • Blue 15C
  • Rose Red 30C
  • Green 30C
  • Orange 45C

The number indicates the color-changing property:

  • 15C changes to blue when its temperature is less than 15C (59F) (However, they say it can become permanently white if exposed to UV light - so don’t put these prints outside!
  • 30C changes to black when colder than 30C (86F)
  • 45C changes to white when warmer than 45C (113F)

These color-changing filaments could provoke some very interesting models. Imagine a dual extruder able to insert some of this filament into an object - you’d have temperature-sensitive sections, which could be buttons, touch detectors or temperature warning indicators. 

Another unusual pair of filaments is now provided by ProtoPasta: Stainless Steel PLA & Magnetic Iron PLA. The stainless steel filament can be polished to a shiny finish, or as they explain, “left unfinished for a cast metal appearance”.

Their Magnetic Iron PLA is truly magnetic when printed, but that’s not all. The iron can oxidize, producing a rusty surface. Thus, this filament offers two unusual properties. 

We’re most intrigued with the magnetic property, however. A dual extruder setup could enable printing doors with magnetic clamps to hold them closed. Small amounts of magnetic material could enable easy assembly of multi-part objects. Simple lids would never slip off. The possibilities are wide. 

These developments show there’s no end in sight for filament materials. By mixing particles into standard polymers, filament can be produced that has the properties of wood, metal or other substances. You can now choose filament not only from a wide selection of colors, but also filaments with many different properties.

Via M3D and ProtoPasta

29 Dec 09:08


22 Dec 18:51

Tyrrhenian Sea and Solstice Sky via NASA...

Tyrrhenian Sea and Solstice Sky via NASA

22 Dec 08:34

NASA considers possibilities for manned mission to Venus

NASA considers possibilities for manned mission to Venus:

"NASA’s Systems Analysis and Concepts Directorate has issued a report outlining a possible way for humans to visit Venus, rather than Mars—by hovering in the atmosphere instead of landing on the surface. The hovering vehicle, which they call a High Altitude Venus Operational Concept (HAVOC), "



22 Dec 10:17

A stunning look at the cliffs of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko


Prior the Rosetta mission, my concept of comets never included the idea that there would be features like cliffs on one...

22 Dec 15:26

Deep neural network rivals primate brain in object recognition | KurzweilAI


Woot! Go Ai researchers and neuroscientists!

Deep neural network rivals primate brain in object recognition | KurzweilAI:

"A new study from MIT neuroscientists has found that for the first time, one of the latest generation of “deep neural networks” matches the ability of the primate brain to recognize objects during a brief glance."

05 Dec 16:08

Hogan McLaughlin Spring // Summer 15

by Samantha
Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15 Hogan McLaughlin Spring // Summer 15 Pre-orders are currently open for a brief window with an expected holiday shipment. Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15 Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15 Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15 Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15 Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15 Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15 Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15 Hogan McLaughlin Spring/Summer 15
18 Dec 19:34

Corporate Disruption using Snowden Style Moral Warfare

by John Robb

In light of he Sony hack, here's some earlier GG thinking on disrupting corporations.

The most interesting aspect of the Sony hack?  

As we anticipated, nobody cared.  Not the public.  Not the government.  

In fact, most people made fun of the victims and the information released was widely reprinted. 

Why did wasn't there a response?  Three reasons:

  • the attack was bloodless and it wasn't aimed directly at the decaying infrastructure of the nation-state,
  • the wealthy victims don't evoke any empathy with a jaded/abused middle class, and
  • the ability of the nation-state to provide security is diminishing very rapidly (as Snowden showed, they can't even protect themselves).

What does this attack mean?

  • Moral warfare against corporate targets works.   Snowden showed it worked against the NSA.  It is working against Sony due to the mendacity and simple nastiness of the personalities involved.  As a result, Sony, and everyone associated with Sony will suffer economically.  The company is now toxic, further everyone damaged by the hack is going to sue it.  In fact, the damage from these leaks may be severe enough to tank the company.  
  • This is survivable for the attackers.  The lack of punishment for this attack in addition to the earlier example seen with Snowden, shows that it's possible to conduct this type of attack repeatedly without evoking a 9/11 level manhunt.  
  • We're going to see this again and again and again.  JP Morgan was hacked at the root level last year.  All of their e-mails and data may end up being bought and used in a moral war against the company in the future.  We may also see some innovation.  For example, it can be focused on a single individual with ease.  I suspect an attack like this could destroy the net worth of a billionaire if done in the correct way.  Not only that, most people would probably laugh at the victim's descent if the right target is chosen.
18 Dec 15:56

*Well, there it went.  A rehearsal, with an empty capsule, for...

*Well, there it went.  A rehearsal, with an empty capsule, for an Indian manned space flight.  The launch was successful.’s-latest-space-rocket-is-no-‘jugaad’


17 Dec 00:00


With a space elevator, a backyard full of solar panels could launch about 500 horses per year, and a large power plant could launch 10 horses per minute.
16 Dec 16:49


15 Dec 17:00

Design of the Week: Kinematics Dress

by General Fabb

This week’s selection is Nervous Systems’ startling Kinematics Dress. 

The problem of 3D printed fashion for many years has been the lack of sufficiently flexible materials. Thus, the fashion you’d often see involved “hard” objects, such as jewelry, belt buckles, head adornments or various rigid attachments. These items have also been far too small to make up an entire fashion outfit, as the build volumes of 3D printers are typically far smaller than most humans. But recently we’ve seen several folks experimenting with a new approach to flexibility: linkages. 

We first saw this approach in London at Digits2Widgets lab, where they had created 3D prints with almost fabric-like qualities. However, it was only a small section. Now we see the brains at Nervous Systems, Jessica Rosenkrantz and Jesse Louis-Rosenberg, have used a similar technique to produce an entire dress with appropriate flexibility. 

Rosenkrantz explains: 

We’ve created a large object from a 3D scan of a person that is much larger than a 3D printer. And then we’ve used a physics simulation to fold up the dress into a small form that can fit inside the machine for fabrication. So the entire idea of this hinges on when we take it out of the machine it can unfold into a dress. 

That’s the key: enabling printing of an entire fashion piece within a limited print volume. That requires flexibility, but so does the dress itself when worn. Creating a dynamic “chain-mail” like object does the trick. 

And does it have flexibility! Please watch the video to see the natural motion provided by this ingenious approach. 

As you’ll see in the video, it was uncertain whether the experiment would succeed. Could you really 3D print a folded dress? Would it unfold without breaking? Fortunately, the experiment was a complete success. 

The work was produced at Shapeways’ Brooklyn factory, where their EOS machines printed the dress in nylon. The dress has now transferred to New York City’s MOMA for permanent display. 

We believe this is a milestone in 3D print design, as it now opens up a broad range of possibilities for fabric-like fashion design. Nervous System were one of the first to produce computer-generated 3D printable jewelry some years ago; it looks like they’ve broken through another barrier this week. 

Via Shapeways

11 Dec 09:00

scienceisbeauty: Cladogenetic tree of representatives of all...


Cladogenetic tree of representatives of all living organisms.

High-res PDF

Via Texas Citizens for Science

11 Dec 17:48

*Optical illusions for computer vision...

09 Dec 08:43

asylum-art: Negative Space : Mungo Thomson Photographic...


Negative Space : Mungo Thomson

Photographic mural, 44’ x 126’ 2010.

09 Dec 09:17

"The End of Sitting" -- Dutch design a chairless office

The Weirdest Proposal Yet for the ‘Office of the Future’

  • 12.08.14  |  
  • Dutch design firm RAAAF has built an installation in Amsterdam called “The End of Sitting.”

"A couple years ago, after research about the health risks of prolonged sitting came to light, a wave of standing desks hit the market. Big companies like Ikea and Steelcase have rolled out standing desk designs; others are even attached to treadmills or recumbent bikes. While these certainly get workers up and off their derrieres, once an employee selects one of these models (and presumably goes through the company’s facilities manager to get it installed) she’s married to that particular product and posture.

“What if we had an environment without chairs and tables, and we don’t think in these archetypes, but in terms of activities?” asks Ronald Rietveld, a partner at the Dutch studio RAAAF. So When the Chief Government Architect of the Netherlands put out a call for local designers to think about new versions of shared office spaces, RAAAF turned in blueprints for “The End of Sitting,” a glacier-like series of boulders and surfaces that would replace traditional office furniture. “I think he didn’t expect the plans we came up with,” Rietveld says. “We are really focusing on a longer-term vision.” (…)

09 Dec 18:15


07 Dec 19:00

Fabbaloo Visits iGo3D

by General Fabb

There's something dissociative about seeing a 3D printer with a roll of Verbatim filament, since I first knew the brand as a provider of 5 1/4" floppies and cassette tapes...

iGo3D is a German-based retail chain specializing in 3D printing  gear. We took a close look at their operations. 

Currently iGo3D has retail locations in various locations in German-speaking countries, but new expansions to Poland and Russia are said to be in the works. 

You’d think the stores cater to consumers, as they display multiple personal 3D printers, operate a 3D scan booth and have the capability to 3D print figurines of scanned customers, but it turns out that’s not always the case. 

In the German market, at least, iGo3D’s primary customers are small businesses and professionals. It may be that German consumers have not yet discovered the thrills of personal 3D printing, but German business certainly has. Specifically, they’ve found personal machines, though small, are often perfect for “first drafts” of products and components, which might be printed on larger commercial 3D printers when finalized. 

iGo3D also provides a gateway for those new to 3D printing. They’ll train people on how to use a machine - before the machine is purchased by the prospective customer. That way the customer can deeply explore the technology, software and specific machine before making a purchase decision. It’s like a very long test drive and seems appropriate for newbies.

A discussion with Michael Sorkin, one of iGo3D’s founders, made it clear to us that the company is on a mission to bring 3D printing technology to everyone. Their focus on user “experience” is a strategy that appears to work and could lead to iGo3D shops soon blossoming across Europe and elsewhere. They have momentum: from only two staff last year, they now have 36. 

We’re very impressed with iGo3D. The stores have a clean, friendly look and somehow appear “environmentally green”, even though there’s nothing in particular in that regard in the store. The chain is well-managed and tries to focus on user experience, rather than specific equipment. We believe this is entirely necessary for the majority of the public, who have yet to truly understand what it means to own a 3D printer. 

If you happen to have an iGo3D store nearby, you must drop by for a visit.

Via iGo3D


09 Dec 11:38

NASA's Kon-Tiki Moment

NASA’s Kon-Tiki Moment

“So we’ve … now finally done something for the first time for our generation,” the Lockheed Martin manager for NASA’s Orion spacelaunch said.   And that’s true.  It’s the furthest NASA have sent a capsule since 1972.  It came back at a screaming 8G, more than any Apollo vessel pulled on re-entry, and nearly three times the G of a Shuttle reentry.  But it did come back.  It’ll be seven years…

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