Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Enabling 3D Printing for Limited Mobility Children Video

This has become far more intricate than I initially thought it would be, and I don't believe I did the subject justice at all in this video.

First of all, there's the topic in the title, making 3D printing available to disabled children, which I give a bit more detail about in a Patreon post. How cool is it that, with a little bit of setup, you can create, slice, and print all from a tablet? The fact that a machine that does the heavy lifting in making things for you is available, accessible, and affordable, is amazing. We truly are living in the future. It's a slightly more industrial future than we all envisioned, thanks to the rough nature of open source, but the results can't be argued with.
I could dive into how to setup a Raspberry Pi to do this, if you'd like. Let me break down the steps, as I remember them:
  • Get Raspberry Pi, memory card, 5V power adapter, and optional camera
  • Flash Octoprint to the SD card, following the instructions on their site
  • While the SD card is still in your computer, use a text editor (I prefer Notepad++) to program your wifi data into the octopi-network.txt file
  • Plug in the Pi to the power adapter
  • Point a browser to http://raspi.local or find the Pi's IP on your network (I prefer Advanced IP Scanner for this)
  • Telnet into your Pi (I prefer Putty for this) 
    • Change the password of the root account with 'sudo passwd'
    • Run 'sudo raspi-config' to fill the file system and turn on your camera if needs
  • Run Cura 15, set it up for your printer, then save the configuration file
  • Open a web browser and go to octopi.local or your pi's IP address
  • Go through this process of setting up a user and loading the config file you make previously
  • Enable the plugins for "Full Featured Slicer" and "Touch UI".
See? Simple. Or not.

This is why, as cool as this is, it needs just a little more polish before I'd call it ready for prime time. Then again, it opens up opportunities for experts like myself, I suppose.

I could talk more about the particular chess set, as well. But, I think I'll save that for the future.

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