Let the future tell the truth, and evaluate each one according to his work and accomplishments. The present is theirs; the future, for which I have really worked, is mine. -Nikola Tesla

Monument of Faith

Etching @ The Old Job – Monument of Faith

The owner at one of my previous jobs called me a few weeks back and asked me to do a quick etching job for him. It involved laser etching pieces of granite that were to be placed on a monument. I like doing this, knowing something I create will be around for many years to come.

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3D Printing Complex Shapes

3D Printing Galore.

I guess you could say I am obsessed at this point. Ever since I got my first 3D printer a few weeks ago, it has been running non-stop. I really enjoy making models and immediately printing them out. I have recently been doing prints for an architect/engineer/sculptor that I worked with for years. He is a natural stone sculptor that recently got into making casts of bronze and other materials. They always have odd shapes so they really aren’t the easiest things to print. (ie heat creep.) but I really enjoy doing it. I just picked up some ‘wood’ filament and will make sure to post some pictures of things I have printed in wood.

3D Printing - UV Color Change PLA

3D Printing - Bronze PLA

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3D Printed Quake Logo

My First (Good) 3D Print!

It has been a long time coming, but I finally bit the bullet and purchased a 3D printer. I have always thought 3D printers were some of the coolest technology out on the market, and to finally be able to try it out myself is almost a dream come true. I picked up a PowerSpec Pro which is MicroCenter’s generic model, which features dual extruders along with an LCD/firmware that is somewhat similar to a MakerBot. I must say that I have been pleasantly surprised so far. It definitely does take some tweaking to get the settings right for your particular application, but once dialed in this printer actually does perform quite well. My first decent print ended up being a Quake logo. 😀 Check it out!

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My Rig

My Personal Computer

I have essentially grown up with ‘modern’ computers, and while they have changed over the years, the components/functionality are generally still the same. I often get asked what type of computer I work on so I figured I would write up a post, which may/may not be interesting to techies like myself. I am a PC guy myself. I like to customize and at this point, sometimes be an early adopter of different components. I also like the absolute plethora of software available for the PC. I do have an older mac pro 3.1 but I can’t even remember the last time I used it.

My rig is not the most high-end system out there by any means, but it really gets the job done for me. Here’s the breakdown of parts:

Intel i7 3770k (which I keep at stock turbos. 3.9ghz)
Corsair H80 Water Cooling
MSI M-Power Big Bang Edition z77 Motherboard
16GB G.Skill RipjawsZ 1866mhz (running @ 8-9-9-24)
256 Samsung 850 Pro SSD
1TB WD Blue
1TB WD Black
MSI Reference GTX 980 (running @ close to 1600mhz!)
EVGA GTX 650 SC (dedicated for PhysX)
Sound Blasters Recon3D Professional Fatal1ty Edition
Corsair TX 650w Power Supply

Overall the thing is pretty quick, much quicker than I have ever been used to. (I have been a budget rig type of guy for a long time.) For audio, at the moment I have the Logitech z-5500 setup going which I have been pretty happy with.

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Nvidia GTX 980Ti Launched! MSRP $649

Well it looks like Nvidia has released or is in the process of releasing a new Maxwell card, the GTX 980Ti. This is an absolute beast of a card that seems to be very close to it’s big big brother, the Titan X. It seems this may be cut down version of the GM200 chip, but current specs match it up pretty close to the Titan. Boasting 2816 Cuda cores and a 384 bit memory bus, this card is exceptional in terms of price when you look at the entire Maxwell lineup. It is said to have 6GB of GDDR5 ram which should be a very nice sweet spot for some time. Grab one Ti now, and one more in the future and you should be set for the up coming 1440p/4k gaming generation. This should be an interesting year in terms of discreet GPU releases, as AMD is said to have the 390x series cards coming just around the corner. I would assume the 980Ti availability will be somewhat limited during it’s launch as this is a pretty big launch.

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Dedicated PhysX Card – Still Relevant?

With the advancement of discreet GPUs, one has to wonder if it is still worth throwing a dedicated PhysX card into your PC. New architecture, overclocking, and multi-GPU configurations (SLI/CF) have generally made the secondary card a thing of the past. The main arguments against doing so were that dGPUs were fast enough today to not even need a dedicated PhysX card, many games/applications didn’t even use PhysX, and if they did, it was very minimal. Having picked up a GTX 980 on sale @ launch, I decided I wanted to run a few benchmarks and see if having a dedicated physics card would improve real-time rendering. Long story short, I did get decent improvements while using a dedicated PhysX card, both averages FPS and max FPS.  (more…)

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