What's going on with the web app

How long has it been since your first email? My experience with them has been that there can be an initial delay, but support is actually very good.

That surprises me, because they are usually very quick with their warranty replacements if something is wrong with the machine.

Other than warranty replacements though, they do not accept returns or exchanges, AFAIK. If you have decided you don’t want it after accepting delivery, you always have the option of selling it.

In a past discussion, in which @dan was active, I said something like, “I have to assume they are working on all the things that they promised first, and choosing not to work at all on anything else.” As I recall, @dan replied and said that my assumption was basically correct. He also said somewhere that they all use the machines personally and anything that annoys us likely annoys the staff too.

Assuming that they are exclusively working on promises first, I think that the passage of time has turned that strategy from an understandable annoyance into a serious error. We all know how hard it is to estimate how long a task can take–the company clearly made some of these errors already. Now what if making the passthrough work as promised turns out to take a year longer than expected?

Putting off a metric ruler and other quality-of-life changes for what could be a very long time does not sound like the right move even if you can defend it by pointing out that you’re only working on things you promised. I don’t make the rules, but I would rather my passthrough support was delayed additionally if I got other meaningful changes along the way.

Shortly after I got my Pro, despite the delays, I was very happy and could have recommended the product to a friend. Sure, it wasn’t feature complete, but the ball was rolling! But today, I would not recommend a Glowforge.

I have to accept the possibility that the information blackout and dearth of updates means that there may be no further meaningful updates at all.

The lack of feature updates, bug fixes, and news now makes the company look kind of broken… IMHO. But none of this will be perceptible to anyone browsing the web site or seeing the company at a trade show. Only people who have been in the family a while are going to notice.

Just my two Earth cents.


From the outside, seems they aren’t using agile methodology with short sprints. Or at least they are then waiting to release stuff in one big monolithic release.


Let’s not turn this into an agile thread :wink:

Next up: Linux vs windows!

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They could still be using Agile. The smallest possible release for a feature might still be something requiring enormous effort, like automagical passthrough camera goodies. There isn’t a one-sprint bite of that which is any good to us.

I think this would depend on the feature they are releasing.

In the past (our only guide), they have released plenty of ‘small’ improvements.

Tracking the changes to the firmware, they have released versions with both minor and major changes.

The last firmware update was a bit out of the norm for them. Typically, they build the release version the day before or day of the release. The last one was built a month before they released it.

Drifting off far into pure speculation - I doubt they are holding onto a bunch of major changes that they are going to release in one big swoop. What I suspect is that post pre-order sales for the current models are lower than expected and they are very busy focusing their efforts on GF2.0.

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Definitely, I was referring to something like passthrough alignment. There is probably no minimum viable release there that isn’t a huge undertaking.

As long as a lot of the software features are ported to the original machines I’d be OK with that. I certainly don’t expect them to never release an updated model. But… if the old machines don’t get any love along the way, there’s gonna be a riot 'round here and more users at your project. :slight_smile:

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I totally agree, not only with this statement but with all you wrote. It was well written and carried the point clearly yet avoided inflaming argument on either side of the divide.

This meshes well with another post i read some time back forecasting the limited returns and increasing costs of Glowforge’s Cloud Software and thus necessary Support structure.

It would be fascinating to be a fly on the wall during a weekly ‘state of the nation’ meeting in Glowforge HQ because it seems the only people who would have much to say are the obviously overworked Client Support team.


Glad to hear it, I was trying to not stir the pot too much.

May 25. and i followed up again last week. I was not a kickstarter, I bought it new 3 weeks ago off the website. And I bought it because of all the great things it said it did in the sales video, which it does almost none of . It says in the video it can cut engrave directly from photoshop or illustrator ( it cant, and every other laser cutter I own does ) . and the object recognition like the macbook thing, it doesnt do. It doesnt say coming soon… it says it does it. it does not, so they cannot refuse a return of the product for those reasons. If they want to make a fuss over that, I am willing to put up that fight.


I’m going to give away a big secret product design tip here. You should occasionally change the appearance of your app, even if the functionality is largely stagnant. It makes it look like you’re doing something, and it makes last year’s model seem outdated. I would recommend Glowforge invest in a visual refresh, as it’s fairly cheap. The first thing any UX hire will do is try to redesign everything.


Yes and each iteration needs to hide more behind … and have less distinct icons to make it harder to use and look more bland.

Too true. I’ve heard the same thing is true of restaurants - that even if you continue to run a great restaurant, eventually business will stagnate unless you reinvent things - change the name, change the decoration, etc.

I love how in iTunes, some of the places you want to drag ‘n’ drop items don’t even become visible until you drag the item onto the drop spot you couldn’t even see before you started dragging. That is amazing to me… they are the company that started the UX revolution, and now they are shipping garbage like that.

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Big company disease. Their online services are even more atrocious. But they make beautiful hardware.

It looks good but isn’t well designed inside: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUaJ8pDlxi8&index=15&list=LLrWYB-vG-BSYU1BKLTi2aYQ&t=0s

Well, in all fairness, every company has screw-ups in the laptop space. But I was more thinking about iPad and iPhone.

If you watch the whole video he points out design problems in those as well.

Ok, apologies that I’m not able to watch it at this moment (am at work), but I just realized this video is the infamous Louis Rossmann rant. This man makes his living repairing hardware. Apple really is hostile towards third parties repairing their hardware.

Like most computer manufacturers, their policy is to troubleshoot the assembly that’s not working, and then replace the whole assembly. I had an ASUS laptop, for example, that had a bad video connector. They replaced the entire mainboard rather than try and replace or reflow the connector. That’s just the way it works - they feel it’s more economical for them to do that, than to try and repair at a finer grained level. Also, designing hardware for maintenance like that comes with some compromises. And finally, I think Apple has a bit of planned obsolescence in mind.

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