I remember when I was in middle school and we received our first computer. Cloistered away in a special room, students were treated to short introductory sessions. I’m not sure what that late ’70s PC actually did, but we were subjected to grueling flowcharts and beginning programming exercises. As time went on and I entered college, we suddenly had the luxury of entire computer labs—and along the way, we’d all collected some skills, even if they were just in ‘word processing.’
Children today can take their tablets to school for added benefit—and it’s no longer note-passing that teachers are battling, but rather kids surreptitiously texting and playing on apps from their phones when they should be learning. There’s a mish-mash of technology going on all around in learning institutions—and it starts very early, as they learn on their mother’s knee, or rather from her palm that might have a smartphone firmly ensconced within.
Now, however, with the advent of 3D printers entering schools, many teachers find that they are having no problem capturing the attention of their students—in fact, they suddenly want to show up early and stay late. Librarians and those running media centers in the schools are suddenly noting that students who they had virtually never seen before are suddenly spending an inordinate amount of time hovering around the 3D printing area. The only problem coming up, aside from a new learning curve and training, is the organization of workflow and managing multiple printers.
Libraries, whether public or in schools, are still a central focus for nearly free use of technology, with rows of PCs and 2D printers available for use. Remember when there was one or two and a waiting list to use them? Well, now most libraries and media centers have a waiting list for something else too: the 3D printing lab. Not only can you learn about the software, hardware, and pay a minimal fee to use the technology, but there’s usually someone on hand to answer questions, or perhaps even lead a series of classes.
As these labs grow—and especially in schools, for all grade levels, workflow and management are a serious concern. While that’s something that really needs to be considered up front, often it’s not as many school media centers and libraries are just learning about the technology to begin with and they may buy one or two machines, adding as they realize the level of enthusiasm being shown by students, and as they add more curriculum as well. As they add 3D printers, however, they also need to be adding a management system—and without one, the scenario can become overwhelming.
With the the YSoft be3D eDee (eDee) 3D printer, technological purchases being made within the educational system as well as corresponding libraries can be well-considered and well-organized due to a software and hardware combination that actually allows for a solution in management—and includes assistance with both 2D and 3D printers. While 3D printers may certainly be making their move into schools, you may have noticed that 2D printers don’t seem to be going anywhere—and you may just have one on your desk or in your office to prove the point.
YSoft, operating all over the world, is the office solutions provider behind this innovative new integration of technology which allows for the eDee to be accompanied by the YSoft SafeQ 6 Platform, a solution offering great benefit to schools or offices as it allows for:
- Print management
- Accounting solutions
Many will probably find this integration of 2D and 3D to be a novel thought, while a number of us are also putting this into the ‘why didn’t we think of this before?’ category. And from the 2D angle—archaic as some may consider that to be today—many other benefits arise, such as:
- Reduced print services costs
- Increased document security
- Better print management
- Improved productivity
This obviously works very well in a world where institutions and companies have ‘fleets’ of printers that require the organization of an administrator and a network.
“Teaching with 3D printers will be the norm,” states the Onvia team, a research company that tracks purchasing contracts from the government, particularly in education. “In 2016, the amount of 3D printing purchases continue to grow as these printers are accepted as an essential part of school makerspaces and as prices for the printers continue to fall.”
YSoft recognizes that 3D printers and 2D printers are both alike yet vastly different in some of the challenges they offer for workflow management and organization. For the 3D printer, all of the following must be considered:
- Total time/3D material cost per print job
- Access control and door locks to prevent objects being taken, or jobs being stopped by others
- Efficient workflows to access available 3D printers or easily reprint a 3D object.
The YSoft be3D eDee itself is a streamlined machine that is enclosed and fully automated, offering a seven-inch touchscreen and print bed auto-calibration. Parts are guaranteed to be of high quality, and users can look forward to accuracy and speed—along with safe operation.
“In education, where 3D printer adoption is growing rapidly, we see that administrators need to manage and audit 3D printer use and costs as they do with 2D printers,” said Vaclav Muchna, Y Soft CEO and co-founder. “With YSoft be3D eDee, we are the first to offer educational institutions a seamless solution that provides all the benefits of print management for their 2D and growing 3D printer fleets.”
Being able to manage student processes and to charge for services requires great organization in any atmosphere, but especially a busy school. The YSoft SafeQ platform also offers a specific credit and billing module allowing for easy control of student accounts, whether they are using a 2D or 3D printer anywhere on campus. The YSoft be3D eDee will be available under early access in Q2 2016 through Y Soft’s global network of channel partners. Additional information this new 3D printer can be found here.
The YSoft SafeQ 6 Platform itself is also a new release for businesses meant to offer even better improvement to the bottom line (reducing print services costs by 30 and, in some cases up to 50%), better productivity, and increased document security as well. The new release to this flagship product also includes document capture/workflow as well as 3D print management, which is what allows it to also be integrated into the eDee 3D printer release. New features include:
- Client Based Print Roaming – allows users to print from any printer in the environment, expanding for the performance of complex tasks done on the client workstation. Fewer—and less expensive–servers are needed to support existing and scale for new users.
- Multitenancy – uses the shared economy concept allowing print service providers to manage multiple customers using one instance of YSoft SafeQ where total costs for hardware and software are shared amongst several companies. This is a very big deal in terms of being able to manage customer flow, and should prove to be an extremely important feature.
- YSoft SafeQ Mobile Terminal – a mobile app that can be used with any multifunction device but is also a cost saving choice for devices without an embedded terminal option
Productivity is improved overall in document capture and workflow as the new platform allows for much of the complexity to be taken out of scanning. The broadest level of secure access is now made available, eliminating breaches, which are all too common. With a smaller number of servers, costs are lowered all around—and that’s an exciting proposition for everyone. Due to more scanning, higher productivity, and high performance machines, paper waste is cut down immensely as well. With all of that in mind, however, it may be that the best part of this release is all of the benefits for the end user in terms of convenience and streamlining.
“With our platform approach to enterprise office solutions, organizations have a resource in Y Soft that is dedicated to providing integrated, intelligent office solutions,” said CEO and Co-Founder Václav Muchna. “Adding document capture, processing and delivery to SafeQ is the first step in building a robust platform solution.”
The YSoft platform is offered in four Suites: YSoft SafeQ Enterprise Suite, YSoft SafeQ Workflow Suite, YSoft SafeQ Print Management Suite and YSoft SafeQ Print Management Suite LD (Limited Devices). Early access to the Suites will begin during Q2 2016. Detailed information about the Suites and new capabilities in SafeQ 6 including universal print drivers and finishing options can be found here.
Offering a full suite of on-premise and cloud solutions, YSoft SafeQ’s products are also used by many large companies and organizations around the world. Founded in 2000, YSoft has headquarters in Brno, Czech Republic and offices all around the world. We’ve been following details on be3D printers, such as the DeeRed and DeeGreen, for a few years now, and YSoft and be3D have been tied together since late 2014. Are you excited about the new printer and SafeQ release? Discuss in the eDee 3D Printer forum over at 3DPB.com.