So, I think we can all agree that material (mats) collection for engineers is (to put it mildly) sub-optimal, these are the changes that I would like to see implemented.

Addition of manufacturing companies- For all the manufactured mats such as pharmaceutical isolators, hybrid capacitors and the like, add a company that makes them! The components exist, someone must have produced them, these producers sell their products. By adding a page in the contacts section in the station services (or wherever) that has a contact for the company, with a ranking system the same as the system factions, we could work for them like any job and rank up, giving us access to buy different grades of mats depending on rank with that company. keeping the current system in place for those that enjoy it but as we all know flying around for ages hoping that RNGsus blesses us with the right USS is tedious and not fun, having a lore friendly reason to go after specific mats so you can engineer your modules just makes sense.

Addition of mining companies- same as above really, work for the company and you will be able to purchase iron, carbon and other mats from them depending on rank. (higher rank=higher grade)

Data-TBH I would get rid of this kind of mat as having to fly to certain planet bases and complete an obstacle course with an SRV within a time limit just plain sucks (for me at least, and I enjoy the SRV!). At the very least change it from planet bases to stations.

As I said, keep the current system in place as its free and random for those who like it, but for it to be the only way of getting the mats (excluding mission rewards), for the more experienced players at least, it just feels like the grind is there for its own sake. when it comes to mats gathering, if my bed had this much padding id be a happy man!
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