Posts tagged 3D design
Makerbot have been the leading force in the 3D printing revolution since the start. Their cheap, easy and very popular systems are at the top of the 3D printers charts. With their new system, the Makerbot Replicator 2, you practically have your own mini factory in your office or home. Along with their Makerbots, they have been updating their software to make it really easy to design something from scratch. But, with their new Makerbot Digitizer, you may not have to start from scratch.
The Digitizer really completes the Makerbot set. If you want to produce your product, you can. If you want to play around with 3D design and print your results, you can. Now, if you want to scan something, scan it, and reprint it, you can. Yes, the Digitizer one of the first 3D scanners. But, now you can have one of these yourself, right at home. This will the ultimate tech tinker’s toy, or a engineers prototyper.
To scan an object, place the object on the mini turn-table. Once you set it up, the turn-table will spin. Then, lasers will scan the object, so that when you get on the Makerbot software, you can view a complete 3D rendering of your object. If you aren’t quite happy with your rendering, you can edit it, shape it and add to using other Makerbot software.
Overall, the Makerbot Digitizer is a great and amazingly useful useful companion tool to the Makerbot. You can scan anything you want in the size range, then edit them. It’s basically like a duplicator. But better. If you want this, you can preorder it for $1,400 to be delivered in October.
CAD (Computer-Aided Design) systems are key tools for hardware design. They make it easy to view and virtually manipulate the object you are designing. Think of Google SketchUp. It is the most basic design software available, but you can still use it to make intricate designs. zSpace takes CAD to the next level.
While attending the Engadget Expand conference in San Francisco, I was lucky enough to try out zSpace on one of their animations. zSpace really immerses you into your animation. You can move things around, virtually pick things up, disassemble items, turn them over and view them from all directions, using a stylus you hover in mid-air. Unlike 3D movies and TVs, if you turn your head or look at it from a different angle, it doesn’t get distorted. There’s less need to view it from different angles, because you can virtually rotate objects. But if someone comes up and wants to view the design in 3D (with lightweight glasses), they can look at it as well and the object won’t be distorted, it will just appear at a different angle, like in real life.
zSpace if also developer-friendly. You can get the SDK (software development kit) and design your own apps for it. There is even a contest where you design an app using zSpace’s Access Center’s system. If you win, you get a your very own zSpace system! If you do get a zSpace, applications extend across many fields. zSpace is the start to the future of engineering, graphic design, product design, and lots of other occupations. zSpace also has apps for medical needs like a 3D human body, and they encourage doctors and medical students to take part in their developer program.
zSpace is currently on the market for around $4,000, a pretty hefty sum. But, for what you’re getting, it could be worth it.