Well, 9 months is a long time. For a baby is the time to be born. For Atelier was the time to mature.
For you that are here for the first time, let me tell you what Atelier is.
Atelier is the name of a KDE project, with the goal to control 3DPrinters(And CNC’s). It began with me and people that wanted a better solution for this world. On 3DPrinting, since the patents started to fall, the Open Source ideology came. So today you have a lot of tools to work on 3DPrinting, from the 3DPrinters itself to the software, a lot of them are Open Source Technology. But all the open source tools needs to be improved, and on the concern of printer hosts, they aren’t all good. So Atelier was born from the idea to give a better user experience on all platforms.
Atelier is divided into two parts, AtCore, that is the API thought by Patrick and Chris, to be all the communication between the 3dprinter and the computer. And so far is very mature, we have a lot of hours testing and improving, so the Core is pretty solid. We are planning to launch it soon. AtCore has a test client, that we used for testing(Of course!), but the tool evolved a lot, so we are planning to use like an Atelier Lite-Advanced version. Because if you are a beginner on this world, this UI and UX isn’t the easiest way to begin.
As you can see, we have a lot of tools to control the 3D printer from moving the axis to monitoring of temperatures.
This image on the left is an example of TestClient connected to a 3DPrinter that I’m simulating with an Arduino Mega. You can see the log, with a temperature command sent every 5 seconds, where the chart bellow is updated.
Like I said in the beginning, Open Source is around the 3DPrinting world. A 3DPrinter work with a firmware, so you have a lot of flavors of firmwares to use. We are supporting those ones:
You can see that we have an Autodetect option. So if your printer is configured right, the M115 command that we sent when the printer is connected, should trigger our Autodetect method and load the correct plugin for the firmware, since every one of them has smalls differences on how they work. So far AtCore was tested on Repetier, Marlin, and Teacup without any problems. The GRBL plugin is for CNC’s, and we didn’t test yet.
Now, the project is called Atelier, isn’t? Well, Atelier is the UI connect on AtCore API.
I’m going to show you only a sneak peak of the UI that we are working on because Atelier needs a lot of more tools and configurations than the TestClient, we are building the widgets that we need slowly, and looking for the best UX.
Here you can see the TabMenu, with the GCode Editor active. We are using KTextEditor to build this widget, so we have a lot of cool tools to use it, like the Syntax Highlight that already came with KTextEditor. You may note that the widget on the right is disabled, this is one of the security that we are in mind when using Atelier because you can’t send any kind of command to the printer if isn’t connected. Well, that and a lot of future features, we are thinking about security and in ways to tell the user if something is wrong. Because sometimes, a 3DPrinter can go on in flames, and we want to prevent that from happening. =D
Here you can see the printer connected, and warming up the Extruder.
Usually, a 3DPrinter owner has a lot of 3DPrinter and settings for each material, so we have setup some profiles, so I only allow you to connect to the printer if you have a profile setup.
We need to know that settings, to have the better control of what is going on so we can prevent bad stuff to happen, or improve our program.
Well, this is a big post now. And I think that is enough for a resume on what we are working.
If you like this, please share. If you want to contribute, join our group and KDE.
That’s all for today folks!