Lead times / factory build times / committed ship date / regulatory certifications

One of the major problems encountered in time travel is not that of becoming your own father or mother. There is no problem in becoming your own father or mother that a broad-minded and well-adjusted family can’t cope with. There is no problem with changing the course of history—the course of history does not change because it all fits together like a jigsaw. All the important changes have happened before the things they were supposed to change and it all sorts itself out in the end.

The major problem is simply one of grammar, and the main work to consult in this matter is Dr. Dan Streetmentioner’s Time Traveler’s Handbook of 1001 Tense Formations. It will tell you, for instance, how to describe something that was about to happen to you in the past before you avoided it by time-jumping forward two days in order to avoid it. The event will be descibed differently according to whether you are talking about it from the standpoint of your own natural time, from a time in the further future, or a time in the further past and is futher complicated by the possibility of conducting conversations while you are actually traveling from one time to another with the intention of becoming your own mother or father.

Most readers get as far as the Future Semiconditionally Modified Subinverted Plagal Past Subjunctive Intentional before giving up; and in fact in later aditions of the book all pages beyond this point have been left blank to save on printing costs.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy skips lightly over this tangle of academic abstraction, pausing only to note that the term “Future Perfect” has been abandoned since it was discovered not to be.

-Douglas Adams, The Restaurant At The End Of The Universe


Bravo! A discourse in Discourse truly worthy of this discourse! :grinning:


Wasn’t this also related to the head speed and deceleration near the sides/edges? Again something that may be software modified. (Not 100%positive on this, but thought I had read this at one point)


that’s what I meant with this (albeit vaguely stated)

I never believed it. At the moment they seem to be about three months behind at five months into an eighth month schedule. Can they catch up? Quite possibly if the manufacturer has spare capacity over the plan. At the moment it would be squeezing four months production into three, seems feasible. If thousands of production units don’t ship this month then four months into two, etc. At some point it becomes impossible long before the end of July is reached.

Not being able to confirm they have the inventory is very worrying though. That is a real shocker as they have had a long time to get the long lead parts ordered.

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Yes! Flex is the 2nd largest in the world for contracts electronics manufacturing. When I read they were building it was great news to me. If my company was building the Glowforge we’d experience the same constraints and issues Flex would encounter.

I’m not saying that there won’t be delays or more issues. I bet they are having issues right now. I can speculate based on experience that Flex isn’t just rolling over and just simply push it out again. I kniw working to solve them to meet their commitment to Glowforge and in turn to commit to us

Fyi - I also work with former Flex employees :blush:


For long lead time parts some factories will ship shipping based on order queue and ship based keeping the biggest customers happy. I been stuck before of a company who names itself after a fruit flexed its muscle and hijacked an order meant for my company because they decided they needed something earlier. (That sucked)

Most factories try to avoid that. At 18 months… even I will say it’s a shock that Glowforge would not resolves issues on the raw materials. If something did delay it now, it would be design, quality or a key supplier staffing Flex or Glowforge or Flex’s plant shutsdown


I think I’m confused here. Just because someone does not publicly want to say anything on a topic is neither a confirmation nor denial of it. It is – simply put – nothing more than they do not want to say anything about it. From there, one has to make all kinds of stories about that topic in order for it to have any further meaning, and those are just stories.


You’re being intellectually dissonant. If you never believed, then you ought not be worried because worst case your disbelief is being validated.

Or maybe for you the worst case would be they ship on schedule because then your disbelief would be proven to be erroneous and you wouldn’t be able to point out you were right to disbelieve.


The questions are trying to probably gauge how “real” the shipping window is. Saying that its been specified is fine, but its been missed a few times already.


Assuming they don’t discover new hardware problems while trying to implement those features, or software challenges so complex they don’t know how to overcome them. There’s no way to know whether any feature will work (no matter how trivial it sounds) until it has been completed. Humans are outrageously poor at predicting how difficult something will be before they have done it.

Another implication of this is that even for the features that do turn out to be possible, it may take vastly longer for them to be delivered than anybody expects. If it is so difficult just to accurately locate designs on a lid cam image, for example, how feasible do you think it is that we will see accurate double-sided cutting in the foreseeable future? How long before it works for the general case and not just in some trivial examples?

I certainly agree that fixing the obvious hardware issues before shipping is critical, but I don’t agree that adding the missing functionality down the line is “just software”. Software is not a magic solution and there are a great many problems that look orders of magnitude easier to solve with software than they actually are.

None of this is to say that Glowforge should change their current focus on fixing all known hardware issues and merely make the UI usable before shipping. But it isn’t correct to brush off a valid concern about multiple missing features by saying “it’s just software, they can fix that any time”. Software doesn’t work that way.


Welp, I’ve been writing in this reply box for probably about an hour now. Writing, deleting, writing, deleting, ad-nauseum. I’ve mostly been talking to myself, discussing my perception of the ins-and-outs of crowdfunding, business practices, capitalism, dishonesty, etc. Then I realize I’m rambling and delete it all and start over.

I wish Glowforge was more transparent. They aren’t.

It seems that some business academics decided, long ago, that opacity is preferable to being susceptible to scrutiny… Those academics were probably right. How crappy.


Yes, I have a close old friend who did electronics manufacturing for his career, he asked me who is building it. I told him Flex and he smiled big, and said “You have nothing to worry about”.
That decision came about after the first big delay if I’m not mistaken. Dan was pretty proud that his baby would be manufactured in the U.S. by them.


My best case outcome is I get mine this month because I am very near the front of the queue. Do I think that will happen, no. Do I think I will get what I ordered this year, no. Do I think I well ever get it, perhaps 50/50.

I don’t see why there is any contradiction. If it arrives before August and the software was completed a few months later I would be happy to say I got it completely wrong and start making things.

Not being able to confirm they have inventory just makes be think they are even further behind than I thought they were.

Where is the dissonance between wanting something to happen but not believing it will happen? On the other hand blindly believing something will happen when there is no evidence it will and every indication it wont would be illogical.

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The academics probably were right (with caveats) at the time, but Glowforge is playing by a different rule book which makes it much less clear how opaque they should be and what kind of customer-company dynamic is going to yield the best result.

I’m generally of the opinion that we can’t demand much information from Glowforge about their internal processes, but that will be at least partly because I’m biased to treat them as if they were a normal business, and they are not. Since they have changed the rules of the game, it is no longer clear what we owe to Glowforge and what Glowforge owe to us.

It does seem pretty clear that if a business asks customers to make a bigger commitment to them they will have to make a bigger commitment in return. Is Glowforge doing that adequately? Time will tell I suppose. For the record, I think Dan and Glowforge are doing a pretty good job both of developing a great laser cutter and adapting to a slightly unusual business strategy. Can’t really tell very much from the outside though :slight_smile:


While I am a total noob in the laser world, with software I can speak with more authority. Lens distortion correction is a well understood problem, motion planning seems more configuring rather than primary programming, the Kerf compensation is again a well understood problem in laser cutting (I’m actually more concerned that I can foresee a war between my cad and the compensation) since all my cam can already do this, autofocus isn’t novel just novel in a laser cutter (although as I demonstrated with my puzzle projects it worked amazingly well even without it). I’m more worried about how large the software team is, and what’s their capacity rather than the complexity.

On my team we judge management capacity to about 1m lines of code per programmer for maintenance and about 100k per programmer during new feature development (not that we expect them to write 100k but that the code base they are modifying/adding to solo is 100k)


Because there is no objective way of satisfying you except to deliver it to you. Yet you persist in questions that you won’t get answered, questioning answers you have been given and disbelieving any evidence that suggests your lack of trust is unwarranted. You’ve made it extremely clear you think they’re lying and yet you continue to poke.

It’s intellectually bankrupt behavior.

I can think of no reason they should send you a unit until it’s the last one to go out the door. After all, if you deserved better treatment you’d be loved by puppies & kittens and we don’t have any evidence of that and we wouldn’t believe you if you said you were and it’s our belief that being loved by puppies is a marker of laser worthiness and nothing you can say will change our minds because that’s just the standard we think they should apply. It just makes me think you shouldn’t get an early ship date.


Totally agree! This post is ridiculous!!


But double-sided cutting and accurate design placement (particularly on uneven materials) involves far more than just correcting for lens distortion. I don’t even know where to start with the statement that improving motion control is mostly just “configuration”.

Don’t your rebuttals strike you as a perfect example of a person grossly understating the complexity of a problem they’ve never personally worked on?