WillAdams wrote:How does one envision this working?
My expectation is that new people:
- buy a machine, get the .pdf, assemble it
... good stuff deleted
Is there some need which new users are having which we're falling short on?
Qualifier: I have not been searching for beginner information for at least 6 months so my views are highly tainted by an out of date perspective. Clicked on the links Will noted and was impressed with the information.
My $0.02. I want a "Beginners Start Here Web Page"
Executive summary: A single web page that directs beginners to introductory pages with enough information to move the beginner forward. And I ramble so, get a cup of coffee before you start reading.
The text that was deleted from the quote is a good start, but a beginner has dozens of paths that have to be traversed, some simple, some complex. Each of these paths has many choices and sometimes too many choices lead to frustration. Some times the links point to sites are way too in depth and way too complex for a beginner.
With a single starting point, out of date links can be avoided. My example: I found a link to a site to download UGS, Univeral G-code Sender, but the link pointed me to a web site that was out of date. Some features didn't seem to work, so I contacted UGS support and suggested using the latest version. Not bit deal but frustrating as none of us have enough time playing on their SO3.
Too many choices - aka, "Here is every possible combination and variation on a theme web site." Go to the web site for G-code Communication and Control, there must be 25 different programs. Too many choices! Narrow down the choices. Pick 3 or 4 that are identified as working for "many" SO3 users. List the good points of each: "Easy to learn, but limited features"; "Used by many, stable, good feature set, need to read documentation"; "Very good feature set, but more complex to use". Listing the other 20+ choices is OK, but as a beginner I do not want to make the evaluation of each one of them.
A frustrating example for me: I wanted to try using Chilipeppr. The wiki page a found directed me to the down load web site. Useful, but what I needed was, Beginning Chilipeppr users start here web page. That page then could talk about the serial tool, JSON(?), and how to set up Chilipeppr. I did find a video(typically I don't search for videos) where the author of Chilipeppr talks about using the tool. I'm a paper guy so I like to have hard copy of documentation (personal problem).
The same should holds true for UGS or Carbide Motion. I want a "Start here" page for each software tool listed on my "Beginners start here" page. Give some information so I can begin cutting some wood. Perhaps I'm biased, but if you're cutting aluminum, you ain't no beginner.
Some times very complex subjects need to be simplified to "This will work. Do a couple of projects with it, then read more and optimize your process." Example: "Speeds and Feeds" This is a huge topic, but a beginner needs an answer like, "For wood, cut depth maximum of 1/2 the diameter of the cutting tool (not the shaft diameter) and a feed rate of 10 inches per minute." No this is not optimal. No this is not the fastest. But this can get a beginner started on a project for just about any wood. You don't want a newbie going down the worm hole that is "speeds and feeds."
This "Beginners Start Here" page doesn't have to have new information, just an organization aimed at someone who doesn't have any experience. I think most of the information is out there, but just a minor re-org and simplification is required.
I don't really know how to do this, but I volunteer to help. Just ask.