Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Setup and Configuration at STEAM Maker Festival

Organ Donor Opus 1.2 was set up in record time for the STEAM Maker Festival at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. We had just three hours on Friday and an hour and a half on Saturday morning before the event, for a total of 4.5 hours. The previous record was about 6 hours.

We were able to drive both vehicles right up to the installation site, so very little time was spent carrying parts back and forth. Plus, Richard was there to help.

Over the last few installations, Abraxas has developed a more systematic procedure for placing the air tubes between the wind chest and the pipes. She starts by sorting the tubes by length, and puts the shorter ones in the back. This results in a more orderly arrangement, and less struggle to make all the tubes reach.

Since the last installation, Paul has created a software assistant for configuring the system to match the installation of the tubes. For past installations, we have written the mapping from wind chest to pipes in a notebook, painstakingly checked it over manually for errors, and then manually pressed keys on the manuals to send the programming sequence to the MTP8 MIDI-to-parallel converters in the wind chest. Any error in the latter procedure meant starting over. Now, we press keys on the manuals to tell the software assistant about the mapping. Any duplicate entry is immediately detected and easily corrected. When all the data has been entered, sending the programming sequences to the MTP8s is fully automatic.

The photo shows the screen of the configuration assistant after all the mappings have been entered. I wanted to record the data before doing anything else, just in case there was a problem.

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