Monthly Archives: January 2017

Choosing the Right Software for Your Non-Profit Organisation – The Necessary Guide

First things first – Managing all the donors efficiently can be quite a headache for charities of all sizes.

Reason – Charities usually think that their customers are their beneficiaries, which is also true to some extent. The truth lies in the fact that for the purpose of fundraising, the customer is the person on the other end of the phone/letter and without them, no charity could survive.

Choosing a system or software that’s right for your charity isn’t as simple as you think it is. Software for charities and churches cannot be a ‘one size fits all’ approach. Though the fundamentals maybe the same (e.g. event management, attendance management, fund management, etc.) but large and small organizations will have different considerations.

Mentioned below are some of the different things that you should consider depending on the size of the charity as well as the needs that you expect the software to fulfill.

For Large Charities and Churches

Software Implementation May Not Cheap for Large Charities – Large charities and non-profit organizations must understand that no matter what they’re required to pay a certain sum of money for the implementation of an appropriate software for the management work. You may not be required to pay a large amount, but it will definitely not be cheap. Remember you’re paying for the services that you avail.

Consider Software That Is Multi-Functional – There will be a number of things that you’ll need to be managed, but this shouldn’t mean that you purchase a number of software. Consider the idea of choosing the one that can perform a number of necessary functions – this will not only save your money but also your time choosing the one that’s perfect for you.

Choose A Reputed Store – If you’re buying charity management software for the first time, chances are that you’ll have to do a lot of research before you can finally pick on the one that’s perfect for your needs. However, sometimes it happens that despite research you tend to go wrong when buying the software. Choose a reputed store online or offline and once you’re convinced with their software and services, go ahead and make the purchase.

For Small Charities and Churches

Bespoke Software? Really Not! Too many small charities think they do or are told they do. First, look at all the great ‘off the shelf’ fundraising/membership packages available and even the CRM systems – they almost certainly can do all (or most) of what you need. Since you’re now functioning on a slightly lower level and going a way up might take some time, it is okay even if you drop the idea of choosing bespoke software.

Free Software Doesn’t Mean Zero Cost – Getting a free software initially doesn’t mean zero cost. You will be expected to spend where necessary, especially if your free software doesn’t provide you the features of effective fund management.

Choose The Perfect Store – Choosing an absolute software for event management, charity management and even attendance management is important for small charities just as much it is for the big ones. Take reviews of various stores online and offline and only when you’re satisfied should to initiate the purchase.

These three points each small and large charities act as a necessary guide for choosing the right charity and church management software. You can follow these simple steps and pick the best software for your non-profit organization.

Article Source:

6 Things to Consider Before Buying A 3D Printer

Are you thinking of buying a 3D printer? With a 3D printer, you can build models, such as a phone case, figurines, cosplay materials and musical instruments, just to name a few. As a matter of fact, these machines offer endless possibilities. Before you dive into this world, here are a few things that you should know.

1. Types of 3D printers

3D printers use state-of-the-art technologies that help you produce physical things. Among all the printers, FDM, which is short for Fused Deposition Modeling, is the most popular. FDM creates a model by heating and forcing out plastic. These printers are easy to find.

Aside from this, the Selective Laser Sintering and Stereolithography are the two other types of 3D printing machines, but they are a lot more expensive.

2. Custom-built Printers

Building your own 3D printer may cost less, especially if you have a lot of spare time. But if you don’t have the time and skills to build one, you can go for a pre-assembled printer. However, if you need one to start your hobby as soon as possible, go ahead and buy one from the market.

3. Price

The price of a 3D printer varies based on several factors, such as the quality of the output. Generally, the quality printers may cost as much as $1000. However, the professional machines may cost more than $2000. But if you are just staring out, we suggest that you go for a simple model that won’t cost you more than $100.

4. Materials

For printing in 3D, two materials are required: Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene and Poly Lactic Acid. Both of the materials get soft when heated, but solidify when the temperature drops. The cost of a spool is under $50.

Before you choose a material, make sure you know what the final product should look like. Aside from this, it is also important to note that not all printers will accept both types of the material.

5. Safety

Safety should be your first priority when it comes to using a good 3D printer. You need to take a few precautions. 3D printers produce a lot of heat when printing an object. So, make sure you don’t burn yourself. Aside from this, the machine may emit fumes that may be toxic. Lastly, make sure you use only food-grade plastic for the printer.

6. Quality

If you want to produce quality printed products with your printer, make sure you take into account two things: print speed and resolution. Actually, print resolution is the degree of detail the machine can produce. Usually, it is in microns. The smaller the microns are the higher the resolution of the object will be. The print speed of the machine measures the speed of the extruder. However, the speed of the machine will be affected by many factors.

So, these are a few important things that you should keep in mind when buying a good quality 3D printer. Make sure you spend a few extra bucks and go for a printer that will print quality products.

Article Source:

6 Top Areas of 3D Scanning Benefits

3D scanning process has proved to be very beneficial in capturing the exact measurements and shape of any given object. It is a technology that has eased production processes in all fields and more people are now embracing the benefits of this sought of scanning where total accuracy of details on an object is needed. It is a process that has actually reduced manufacturing costs and yet offers higher quality parts in the end. Below are some of the top areas the 3D scanning benefits.

1. Prototype

This process can be applied to prototype phase in different kinds of ways, but the major use is to reduce design cycles needed in the prototyping. When 3D scans are used in designing a part, the accurate data makes it possible to utilize precise measurements of the physical product reducing the process by a huge percentage. The scanning is also combined with prototyping so that physical objects are scaled accurately.

2. Design

It is among the areas that have greatly benefited from 3D scanning. They scans are applied starting with physical object and then using this to create a CAD model. Mating parts are also scanned and then incorporated into a given design so the end result is better fitting parts that are consistent. This process is known as reverse engineering or modeling and when utilized, new designs are improved and incorporated for engineering optimization of manufactured part.

3. Production

In production, the scanning is used to capture tooling or parts changes which occur in the production phase. Usually hand tuning is needed in tooling to get the desired finish and look of a given part. When 3D comes into the picture, the optimizations and hand modifications are easy to transfer from tool to tool so all parts manufactured match after the production ends. The scans also help in analyzing and characterizing tool wear during the production; this is very helpful in correcting tool failure or eliminating the same before it is too late. It is actually very possible to recreate optimized part using a 3D scan.

4. Engineering

3D scan data makes it possible for physical objects to be translated into the engineering phase of projects directly. The data offer flexibility in performing FEA, CAE, CFD and other analysis that is necessary in the engineering area on objects manufactured and physically modified. The process offers a simple way of achieving accuracy.

5. Quality control

Using 3D scanning, it has become possible to analyze built condition of parts after manufacturing. This non-contact technology offers a quick way of inspecting overalls size and shape of the parts and detecting issues that could affect performance of the parts. When combined with statistical analysis software, 3D scanning helps maintain and predict the quality of parts in the manufacturing phase.

6. Distribution

It might sound unrealistic, but 3D scanning comes handy in vision systems used in distribution and shipping centers to sort and track packages. The scanning certifies the integrity of products before and after shipping. It is also used to increase packing density and creating support structures and casing.

Lidar scanning systems are some of the systems used in 3D scans to create offer precise digital copies of props, cars, aircraft and even buildings. There is just so much that can be enjoyed using the systems.

Article Source:

3D Scanning – What You Need To Know

3D scanning is a process of capturing digital information of object shape using equipment that has light or laser to measure distance between the object and the scanner. The non-destructive and non-contact scanning technology uses lines of laser light capturing the exact shape and size of the object. The fine details of even the smallest objects are captured and the process comes in handy in so many industries and fields. Some the areas that 3D scans are commonly used include automotive, manufacturing, medical and aerospace.

3D laser scanners capture thousands of points per second, allowing quick inspection of parts. It is a process that is ideally suited for measuring and inspecting contoured surfaces and also complex geometries that require lots of data for accurate description and where traditional measurement methods are impractical.

What are the advantages?

3D scanning has become very popular among business people in different fields. You can now easily find 3D scanning services for all needs you might have especially as far as accuracy and high quality productions are concerned. The popularity of the process is as a result of the many advantages it has over other traditional options. Some of the advantages that come with the process include:

1. Quick capture of all physical measurements of any given physical object; with 3D scanning, the size of the object does not matter.

2. Saves time when designing. The high definition details of objects make it possible for designers get it right with the first trail, hence saving time, even with productions that would have otherwise proved to be complex and time consuming.

3. Ensures perfect fit of parts with the first try. 3D has literally taken the guess work of production processes, especially for those dealing with prototypes and creating parts. The detailed information collected from an object is accurate and hence it is very rare to have parts that have any functional defects.

4. It captures engineering optimization that is necessary in manufactured parts. The process offers more confident to manufacturers in terms of meeting standards and any set objectives in the manufacturing process of parts. Using the scans, it has become even possible for manufacturers and designed to compare between designed and built models conditions so manufactured parts are top quality.

How does it help the design process?

3D scans are largely used in the design process of various products. Model scanning proves beneficial in the design process because:

· It increases effectiveness when working with shapes and parts that are complex

· It provides updated versions of CAD models that are outdated

· It makes it possible to replace missing parts or older parts

· It helps product designing so that someone else’s part can be accommodated

Which areas can in be used in?

3D scanning is very effective and has become a popular option in various fields including:

· Historical artifacts

· Prototyping or reverse engineering

· Entertainment industry for games, TV and movie productions

· Medical and dental

· Inspection

· Marine

· Construction and architecture

A 3D scan can prove highly beneficial in different sectors. If you do not have what it takes to enjoy the accuracy of 3D scans, you can get help from service providers who offer all kinds of scanning services.

Article Source: