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Laser Etching a Laptop

CmdrTaco posted more than 8 years ago | from the just-because-you-can-doesn't-mean-you-should dept.

Portables (Apple) 271

ptorrone writes "I didn't really plan using a $20,000 laser cutter on my 17" PowerBook to etch a 19th-century engraving of a tarsier, a nocturnal mammal related to the lemur (also the vi book cover), but it seemed like it had to done. The results are stunning..."

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271 comments

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security etching? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075087)

When i first read the title, i assumed they were talking about security etching.

Neat picture, but the one thing I'm left wondering is why the magazine company had the laser in the first place?

Re:security etching? (1)

cacoe (870499) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075098)

for etching plates to be printed via a press?

Re:security etching? (1)

fallacy (302261) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075123)

Because this [austinpowers.com] is the CEO.

Re:security etching? (4, Insightful)

kimvette (919543) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075446)

What is better for identifying an item as yours? A tiny serial number laser-etched somewhere inconspicuous, or a huge lemur on the case that is not easily scratched out? It'd be cool if Apple were to see this and offer custom laser etchings on all of their notebooks.

Re:security etching? (5, Informative)

Bishop (4500) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075562)

Laser etching [etchamac.com] for your mac. I saw this linked in another post and am now considering it.

Why... (3, Funny)

Voltageaav (798022) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075093)

The CEO was using it to clean under his fingernails of course.

How... (1)

kellar (932533) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075122)

the best way to etch any apple is of course to throw some dirt at it [theregister.co.uk]

summary: (4, Funny)

nietsch (112711) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075485)

1) Guy wants picture from vi book on notebook
2) goes to some lab where they have a machine to do it
3) copyrights free image is imported into Coreldraw
4) Laptop is etched
5) picture is on laptop

PS: what is wrong with slashdot? I have to sign in constantly...
PS2:

6) ???
7) profit!!!!

Re:Why... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075520)

Tiger is only the current release of OS X and to be surplanted by "next apple os". The Tarsier is well assocaiated with Vi; perhaps his favorite editor. The Tarsier image will be more appropriate in the long run; with the life of his laptop.

Just my .02 cents.

PS: Does anyone else think that this is the "Tatoo" for the laptop?

TIger (3, Interesting)

klaasb (523629) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075097)

Why not choose the tiger from this O'reailly book??
http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/mactigerpg/index.ht ml [oreilly.com]

Would have made more sense to me anyway.

Re:TIger (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075125)

Better still, a gnu.
<editor war goes here>

Not a tiget (4, Funny)

jspoon (585173) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075438)

Obviously, the animal to engrave using a laser would be a friggin shark.

I BET IT'S MORE USEABLE NOW! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075100)

Way to go jerk! I bet it's more useable now! Why don't you make it transparent like your windows? That would REALLY make it much more useable! You fucking apple fags are hilarious! Fucking homos.

Re:I BET IT'S MORE USEABLE NOW! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075283)

... and of course, PC users (each and every one of them as heterosexual as can be) would never do anything like this.... or would they? [envador.com]

Very Nice... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075104)

But does he have the same tattoo on his shoulder?

It's a good thing.. (5, Funny)

ickeicke (927264) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075108)

It's a good thing that those Tarsiers are mainly insectivorous and do not eat Apples! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarsier [wikipedia.org]

Re:another good thing (1, Insightful)

theskeptic (699213) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075216)

it was done on this notebook because it just looks so much cooler on the off-white powerbook.
Didn't see any mention of cost. What are the chances of Squid Labs offering it as a commerical service for Apple/laptop owners in general? If I had a powerbook, I sure would be interested in getting this done.

Laser etcher? (4, Funny)

gcnaddict (841664) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075112)

How much effort would it take to convert an epilog laser printer into a high-powered moonraker? :P

Re:Laser etcher? (0, Redundant)

Ashley Bowers (932552) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075150)

Alot more than you could imagine.But would love to hear your thoery on how you would convert the printer into a "moon raker"

One question. (3, Funny)

sparkeyjames (264526) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075117)

Why didn't he use a sheep?

Re:One question. (1)

Monkofdoom (928921) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075157)

Warranty void!

Re:One question. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075234)

Because that's what's going on the Windows-running Dell laptop.

Re:One question. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075272)

That would make more sense on an iPod.

Re:One question. (4, Funny)

Thumper_SVX (239525) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075436)

Because it wouldn't have fit into the machine, silly! Besides, it probably would have been hard to keep the sheep still while laser-etching another animal on it's hide.

I would like to see (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075118)

I say we all chip in and send a laptop up to the boys at OCC and see what Paul Jr. can do! Never mind, he would probably put it on the water jet.

M-x engrave-cute-animal (0, Flamebait)

Kartoffel (30238) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075119)

Nice choice of an animal, too. Those Mac people have style. You wouldn't catch them engraving a woodcut of some cud-chewing African antelope or anything like that.

Re:M-x engrave-cute-animal (1, Flamebait)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075327)

The Gnu is clearly the superior image. What type of primitive being would use anything represented by a big-eyed, butt scratching monkey?

Also: The Gnu could crush your monkey. :) (or should that be :q? Damn. I can never remember ;))

Oh my... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075120)

  • huge eyes
  • hands forward
  • hunched posture
  • sitting position
  • scrawny limbs

...Is it just me or is O'Reilly trying to show us what geeks are going to evolve into?

Re:Oh my... (4, Funny)

Comatose51 (687974) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075229)

No, no. Geeks are obviously intelligently designed. I mean for geeks to evolve they would have to successfully pass on their genes and you know the chances of that is pretty low. Geeks are the strongest evidence of some intelligent creator with a weird sense of humor, who may very well be a geek himself. I mean who else but a geek would sit around creating automaton...

Re:Oh my... (5, Funny)

jmichaelg (148257) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075277)

It's difficult to evolve without sex.

Re:Oh my... (1)

Peganthyrus (713645) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075407)

No, it's difficult to evolve without reproduction. I know a fair number of geeks who have lots of emphatically non-reproductive sex...

Re:Oh my... (1)

z-man (103297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075524)

I'm still working on assexual reproduction, divide, mmmrmm Divide damn it!

Other etching tools (4, Funny)

KiloByte (825081) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075121)

You see, that's nothing. In my days, we used the bottom of tea mugs to etch random abstract art! Usually, the result was a series of displaced rings.

Re:Other etching tools (1)

phase_9 (909592) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075154)

There are indeed some strange "crop-circles" forming on my desk and chasis - I think aliens are landing at 4am coding sessions and forming them, 'cos it sure as hell isn't me - I was in the bathroom after drinking too much coffee... :|

Re:Other etching tools (1)

JustOK (667959) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075206)

You had tea mugs? Back in my day, we had to etch images directly on our corneas!

Copyright (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075129)

I hope they got permission from O'Reilly to do this?!

Re:Copyright (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075144)

SHUT

THE

FUCK

UP

YOU

UTTER

FAGGOT

Re:Copyright (2, Informative)

jonathan_ingram (30440) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075153)

No need. If the image was originally published before 1923 then it's public domain, and can be used for any purpose, commercial or non-commercial, without having to pay anything or credit anyone.

Re:Copyright (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075255)

Obviously you don't know the images O'Reilly uses are only based on such old pictures. Of course they are edited and such. Moreover only the early books used old copperplate engravings, while the images on the newer books were created specially for them!

Re:Copyright (3, Informative)

JabberWokky (19442) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075454)

Yes, but this one was based on an older engraving... and the source for the image burned was from the Dover Archive, not the O'Reilly book that used it (they even link to the original engraving provided to the public). Plus the coverage of this is from Make Magazine, published by O'Reilly.

I have a feeling they are okay with it, plus the burned image is derived from the original, not from O'Reilly. I'm not sure that you read the article at all.

--
Evan

Re:Copyright (3, Interesting)

AtomicBomb (173897) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075581)

One more piece of trivia: the cover page woodcut animals featuring in front of the OReilly books are from the Dover Pictorial Archives. It is a collection of 18th to 19th century wood and copperplate engravings of animals, ie no copyright issue to care about... In fact, the students in my former research group get used to choose one from the archive as well as a decoration for their own thesis. Many university/art school libraries have that collection. Feel free to use them when need a drawing of some cute animal.

http://www.oreilly.com/news/lejeune_0400.html [oreilly.com]

Re:Copyright (3, Interesting)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075233)

O'Reilly has more of a clue than most companies. I suspect that they are sitting back and thinking that they just got free advertisement and will have more as the laptop gets exposed.

Kind of like all the penguins that everybody is selling for Xmas. That will help Linux as most will think that Tux looks similar.

Re:Copyright (3, Insightful)

BushCheney08 (917605) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075348)

Yeah, so do I. Oh wait: [makezine.com] MAKE comes from O'Reilly, the Publisher of Record for geeks and tech enthusiasts everywhere.

Practical Joke (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075130)

If only one of his coworkers would of switched the image with "hello.jpg"

Disturbing joke (0, Redundant)

Kjella (173770) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075176)

If one of his coworkers would have switched the image with the goatse.cx guy...

Re:Disturbing joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075195)

you're not particularly bright, are you

Re:Disturbing joke (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075198)

you realize that hello.jpg is the filename for the goatse guy ...

Re:Disturbing joke (-1, Redundant)

nsasch (827844) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075201)

If I had mod points, I'd mark you redundantly redundant. I would do that if I had mod points, I would.

Re:Disturbing joke (1)

BushCheney08 (917605) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075306)

Oh you would, would you?

Re:Disturbing joke (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075365)

Well, I do have mod points and I am modding you redundant. Sucker!

Re:Practical Joke (1)

Nevenmrgan (826707) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075336)

That, my friend, would have gotten you baninated on Fark.

Re:Practical Joke (1)

hr raattgift (249975) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075456)

Yes! Centred right on the Apple!

Re:Practical Joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075509)

Would have , not "of."

Re:Practical Joke (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075642)

Why a tarsier? (3, Interesting)

Fitzghon (578350) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075133)

Why didn't you etch his Noodliness, the Flying Spaghetti Monster?

Fitzhon

Re:Why a tarsier? (1)

wesw02 (846056) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075247)

haha, i love it

wow! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075146)

And it would have been actually worthwhile if it was an image of something that you would actually want.

Etching provides security. (5, Insightful)

Futurepower(R) (558542) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075165)

A laptop with large identifying markings is less likely to be stolen.

Re:Etching provides security. (0, Troll)

ankarbass (882629) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075220)

Is that because it has less value? I mean, beauty is in the eye of the beholder an all, but um, don't expect apple's design department to be ringing up any time soon.

Re:Etching provides security. (4, Informative)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075525)

No, because it is a hell of a lot more identifiable. The more unique something is, the harder it is to fence.

Owner: "I'd like to report my laptop stolen."

Cop: "I see. Does it have any unique markings to help us identify it?"

Owner: "Yes, it has a large image of tarsier permanently etched into the cover."

Cop: "Excellent!"

Grow up mods (-1, Troll)

ankarbass (882629) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075680)

This author of this article is practically frothing over how beautiful his apple looks with his custom laser work. How is criticising his quaint applique off topic when the entire article is about him playing dressup with his mac.

Casemodding isn't any less gay just because you do it on a mac.

Warranty... (4, Interesting)

BBCWatcher (900486) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075166)

...voided?

Chick Magnet (4, Funny)

hey! (33014) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075173)

Just think: you won't have to invite girls back to your place to view your etchings.

Goatse (5, Funny)

ivan kk (917820) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075207)

Just imagine it, etching a goatse, with the apple in the middle.

Re:Goatse (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075259)

Somebody takes a lot of effort to do something interesting to a 2000 laptop, and you think of using goatse?????

Hot light (1)

mtec (572168) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075218)

Never looked so cool.

Re:Hot light (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075241)

Is there any potential damage to the screen? I'd be awful hesitant to mess with my $2500 Powerbook that way. It is SUPER cool, though...

Way to screw up a perfectly nice powerbook (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075219)

Wow. Now it's absolutely hideous.

And THIS qualifies as NEWS?

How about... (3, Funny)

Apotekaren (904220) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075261)

A tiny Tux? Or even better, some weird flying windows? Or an "Intel Inside" logo. You'd get some funny looks for that.

Re:How about... (1)

epedersen (863120) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075470)

or a Tux sitting on a flying window.

Re:How about... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075654)

considering apple is releasing pc's with intel inside i wouldn't find it that surprising.

I like it (2, Insightful)

wesw02 (846056) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075263)

I like it, and since apple only has one case for the powerbooks, one like that is sure to turn heads.

Welp... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075268)

There goes the resale value.

Re:Welp... (1)

Ph33r th3 g(O)at (592622) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075516)

What resale value? Used Powerbooks aren't worth much anyway since the Intel announcement.

Shoulda done a liger (2, Insightful)

everphilski (877346) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075269)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liger [wikipedia.org]

-everphilski-

Re:Shoulda done a liger (1)

BushCheney08 (917605) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075328)

Serval cats [wikipedia.org] are cooler looking [google.com] .

Re:Shoulda done a liger (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075558)

yeah, but they arent bred for their magical abilities

-everphilski-

Re:Shoulda done a liger (2, Funny)

back_pages (600753) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075665)

They're pretty much my favorite animal.

should have been a... (5, Funny)

udderly (890305) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075270)

liger. It's pretty much my favorite animal.

Re:should have been a... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075444)

Cut it out Napolean

Few to no reasons to be concerned about the laser (3, Informative)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075294)

For one, a laser capable of cutting metal generaly won't be used for etching, and a laser designed for etching won't be able to cut easily.

I know $20k seems like a lot of money for a machine to slashdotters, a $20k laser system won't be cutting, IIRC, laser cutters go around $200k and up. $20k is mid-to low end for laser etchers though. I considered financing a $10k etcher, but I didn't know how I could make it pay for itself, unlike the techies and investors in the '90s bubble, I wanted a good business model to justify spending money.

Re:Few to no reasons to be concerned about the las (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075431)

for one that last IS used for cutting, just because you do not understand how that product works does not mean you are correct. It is designed for cutting thin sheets for templates and other uses, if you would have takeen 3 seconds to google it you would have seen what it was capable of.

and yes you are correct, a $20,000US cutting laser system is dirt cheap, but you are wrong thinking you cant touch a cutting laser for less than $200K it will be cutting, it is designed for cutting and they do that cutting job quite well.

you made a NEWBIE MISTAKE.... and with a uid that low that is a punishable crime here on slashdot.

hehehe (2, Informative)

BushCheney08 (917605) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075295)

Love this line from TFA: The laser cutter uses Corel Draw, which is kinda cute.

Dorkiest. Statement. Ever. (2, Funny)

Luveno (575425) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075333)

"a tarsier, a nocturnal mammal related to the lemur"

I'm somehow reminded of Napoleon Dynamite.

Where and how much? (2)

eyepeepackets (33477) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075337)

Dear Sirs,

I'm most interested in having my laptop etched. Where do I order from, how much is it, and what are the terms/conditions for getting my machine to you and back again.

Most Sincerely,

James D. Geek aka eyepeepackets aka Marspoet

Seriously though, I will buy this service for my Sager laptop in a fraction of a mouse's heartbeat, so bring it on!

Slow on the uptake (-1, Offtopic)

joshv (13017) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075396)

Slashdot = Digg + 2 days

Re:Slow on the uptake (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075620)

Slashdot = Digg + 2 days + People over 14
Slashdot != Digg and Digg != Slashdot.

If Digg is so much better for you, then go there and stop acting like a child here.

Now, I have to wonder... (1)

HaloZero (610207) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075404)

...would that void the warranty? Or, if it did infact break, would they just give it to him with some 'mad props?

Tattooed PowerBooks might become the new thing. I'd put a camel on mine, or probably any number of things. It's definately a cool idea.

Re:Now, I have to wonder... (3, Interesting)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075564)

What would make more sense, from a business standpoint, is to provide the service to large corporations that supply laptops to their employees. Etch the company's corporate logo onto the laptop, along with a phone number to call for a reward. Unlike an adhesive sticker, this can't be removed and would make a stolen computer a hell of a more difficult sell, assuming a thief would even bother with it in the first place.

Make mine vintage Betty Page (2, Interesting)

bobalu (1921) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075412)

If you're going to all that trouble you might as well make it worthwhile!

nothing new (2, Informative)

jalf991 (932562) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075429)

its been done before http://www.etchamac.com/powerbook.php/ [etchamac.com] i saw these guys at the mac expo in boston in the summer, the finished product is amazing

How Many Mac Owners Have Had Sex With Computer? (0, Troll)

cannuck (859025) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075471)

Of course I am only kidding ;) But...... you never know.

it has now been (1)

ruiner5000 (241452) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075482)

rendered unsellable. I hope the owner wants it for life.

Re:it has now been (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075682)

Quite right!! rendered unsellable to any Emacs users that is :-P

the tricks that can be played on eyes... (2, Interesting)

escay (923320) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075492)

is it just me or does it look like the tarsier is looking away in the last (different lighting) photo of TFA?!

Tatoos for the Laptop (2, Interesting)

JFaclcon (932563) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075502)

I think it's actually a pretty cool idea. Even if a person had a $20k machine, if they charged someone $100 just to tatoo their laptop with their favorite image, they would have it paid for only after 200 customers, which I'm sure there are at least 200 geeks out there willing to shell out a hundred bucks to have their favorite image etched on their little portable. Kudos for that idea.

mod 3own (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14075526)

Keep, and I won't users of NetBSD these chaalenges not anymore. It's

frickin laser (2, Funny)

Dr. Max E. Ville (821578) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075584)

If he's done, can we now mount it on a dolphin, please?

O'Reilly art Creative Commons licensed? (1)

foniksonik (573572) | more than 8 years ago | (#14075631)

Or rather, what is the license for repurposing the art on those book covers? The article doesn't mention it... does anyone on /. happen to have a copy of O'Reilly's Learning the VI Editor????

On a sidenote... shouldn't he have chosen EMacs instead?

Also if the art is not CC or Copy Left or some other open license, is this a good example of fair use rights, as long as it's for your own personal use?

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