In the personal 3D printer field, one concern is whether the average user not trained in CAD will get any benefit from these devices sufficient to sustain the growth of this nascent industry. If you’ve never designed anything in your life, how do you go about doing it? And, despite their simplicity, the current group of personal 3D printers does assume that users have some familiarity with basic design.
Scanning and modifying an object are way to obtain the needed CAD data for these printers. But most scanning equipment is way out of the price range of an average non-professional 3D printer user. Fortunately, though, a number of tools are coming that will help the average person with their wish to design a product. One tool is from Geomagic, a provider of 3D software for creating and inspecting digital models of physical objects. Geomagic will be the technology behind the Microsoft® Kinect™-to-3D print app that is part of 3D Systems’ Cubify.com. This application, at an early stage of development, will automate the process of 3D imaging and 3D printing for users of personal computers.
Introduced at this year’s CES Show, Kinect-to-3D print technology is fresh out of Geomagic’s R&D division; it is an application built on top of Geomagic Studio®. 3D data taken using this method can also be used for other purposes including design, testing, innovation, archive and prototyping.
Cubify.com is a 3D create-and-make application with intuitive 3D apps, 3D printable content libraries of games, puzzles and collections. Cubify.com turns any mobile device, tablet or Kinect device into a digital canvas. Compelling content creation, capture and customization apps make it simple and fun to personalize creations and print them at home on a Cube™ 3D printer or have them printed using 3D Systems’ online Cubify service.