for Ars Electronica's New Museum Main Gallery
Imagine a future in which you no longer need to buy gym shoes in a store; instead, you print them out at home, use them, and then toss them into the recycling bin when you’re done! What seems like a futuristic vision, could soon be reality.
Concise Software teamed up with ARS Electronica to develop a dynamic array of unique and original applications to contribute to FabLab, a cutting edge media 3D printing lab, offering the latest in 3D printing technologies.
FABLAB at Ars Electronica Center at a glance
Ars Electronica Center is a cultural, educational and scientific institute active in the field of new media art. Its activities focus on the interlinkages between art, technology and society.
The idea behind FabLab (from fabrication) is to offer the capability of downloading objects from the internet and printing them out at home as real stuff (not just paper)! This is done through the use of a 3D printer using a computer model to generate an actual object, and a computer-controlled laser cutting the high-precision shaping of any chosen material.
Using the internet makes it possible to disseminate designs for articles of clothing or pieces of furniture just as easily as sharing music and pictures today.
Visual Studio 2005 / C++
Eclipse / J2SE / Alice scene-graph
Fab@Home hardware and software
Concise Software’s team contribution to FabLab was the development of unique and original applications:
- 3D Rotation Modeler – the idea behind this was to give the user the possibility to create 3D models by drawing 2D strokes on the screen. In real time, a 2D stroke is rotated on its Y-axis, resulting in 3D objects. The application was extended by a number of points and line editing tools. The creation of 2D strokes was based on the math equations for Hermite Curves.
- AEC FiberMesh Modeler – based on an original concept by Andrew Nealen, Takeo Igarashi, Olga Sorkine and Marc Alexa, “FiberMesh” is the designing of freeform surfaces with 3D Curves. Concise Software’s task was to combine features and functionalities from both prototype applications – Fibermesh and Plushie, which enable users to generate 2D patterns from 3D objects. Concise Software’s team also extended the software with new GUI and additional features like saving and loading from STL/OBJ file and undo buffer.
- FabLab Gallery – an application for showing FabLab’s content, both 2D graphics and 3D models, on a triple head display. The application was loading and displaying a number of 2D graphics formats like: bmp, jpg, png, gif, tiff and 3D objects formats: stl both binary and ASCII, obj, 3Ds.
- Fabrication Stations – three applications for managing the fabrication process with the use of a 2D printer, laser cutter and 3D printer. The functionality of stations was extended using a specially developed, technologically advanced model editing library with features such as 3D object slicing, 3D object simplifying and 3D object format loaders and converters e.g. STL to OBJ or OBJ to 3DS.
The next steps
The project was completed successfully and participants enjoyed the applications with ease throughout the duration of the lab’s operation.
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