If a picture is worth a thousand words, what is a model worth?
THE design studio where Jony Ive reigns, on the ground floor of Two Infinite Loop on the Apple campus, is shielded by tinted windows and a heavy locked door. Just inside is a glass-booth reception desk where two assistants guard access. Even high-level Apple employees are not allowed in without special permission.
To the left of the entrance is a bullpen of desks with young designers; to the right is the cavernous main room with six long steel tables for displaying and playing with works in progress.
Beyond the main room is a design studio, filled with workstations, that leads to a room with moulding machines to turn what's on the screens into models. Beyond that is a robot-controlled spray-painting chamber to make the models look real. The look is sparse and industrial, with metallic grey decor. Techno and jazz play in the background.
Almost every day when Jobs was healthy and in the office, he would have lunch with Ive and then wander by the studio in the afternoon. As he entered, he could survey the tables and see the products in the pipeline, sense how they fitted into Apple's strategy, and inspect with his fingertips the evolving design of each.
Usually it was just the two of them, while the other designers glanced up from their work but kept a respectful distance. If Jobs had a specific issue, he might call over the head of mechanical design or another of Ive's deputies. If something excited him or sparked thoughts about corporate strategy, he might ask the chief operating officer, Tim Cook, or the marketing head, Phil Schiller, to come over and join them.
Ive described the usual process: ''This great room is the one place in the company where you can look around and see everything we have in the works. When Steve comes in, he will sit at one of these tables. If we're working on a new iPhone, he might grab a stool and start playing with different models and feeling them in his hands, remarking on which ones he likes best. Then he will graze by the other tables, just him and me, to see where all the other products are heading. He can get a sense of the sweep of the whole company, the iPhone and iPad, the iMac and laptop and everything we're considering. That helps him see where the company is spending its energy and how things connect.
''And he can ask, 'Does doing this make sense, because over here is where we are growing a lot?' or questions like that. He gets to see things in relationship to each other, which is pretty hard in a big company. Looking at the models on these tables, he can see the future for the next three years.
''Much of the design process is a conversation, a back-and-forth as we walk around the tables and play with the models. He doesn't like to read complex drawings. He wants to see and feel a model. He's right. I get surprised when we make a model and then realise it's rubbish, even though based on the CAD [computer-aided design] renderings it looked great.
''He loves coming in here because it's calm and gentle. It's a paradise if you're a visual person. There are no formal design reviews, so there are no huge decision points. Instead, we can make the decisions fluid. ''Since we iterate every day and never have dumb-ass presentations, we don't run into major disagreements.''
3D Systems Acquires My Robot Nation
April 10, 2012 - 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE: DDD) announced that it has acquired My Robot Nation (MRN), a leading consumer technology platform that provides intuitive, game-like content creation for 3D printing.
MRN is a perfect addition to 3D Systems Cubify.com online repository of 3D models. Now enhancing Cubify with hundreds of new fun and easy 3D creation and printing applications, together with its growing developer community.
The acquisition of MRN underscores 3D Systems’ Cubify commitment to democratize 3D content-to-print access for kids and adults alike, unleashing creativity and allowing individuals to express themselves easily in 3D. MRN brings to Cubify proven video game principles to provide a simple, fun and amazingly flexible creative experience. Within minutes, anyone can quickly and easily create their own, unique collectible from billions of possible combinations then make it real with 3D printing.
What does that mean for the My Robot Nation? More possibilities, more features, new kinds of 3D creations … basically: MORE AWESOME!
click here for sales enquiries about the Cube
3D Systems Asia-Pacific in the News
ABC Business, the national Australian Business Program, showed the potential of Additive Manufacturing and 3D Printing, featuring 3D Systems Asia Pacific Headquarters in Melbourne and our team-member Travis Hardy.
In times, where some industries suffer crisis, the program predicts a wave of innovation and names 3D Systems Melbourne with its onsite 3D Printing equipment the “facility of the future”. Have a look.
3D Printing Takes Off...
Designers and engineers around the world use 3D Systems 3D printers to impressively communicate their design concepts under ever-tightening deadlines.
Seabird Aviation Australia designed and developed the aircraft SEEKER, a most unusual design compared to standard aircrafts. Described as a cross between a helicopter and a glider, it was purpose built for surveillance and patrol operations. The SEEKER is specifically used for the gathering of aerial imagery and intelligence data, using high definition eletro-optical and infra-red camera systems for such applications as power-line patrol.
3D Systems Asia-Pacific utilised SLA (stereolithography) technology to create a scaled replica model of the Seeker for Seabird to display at Asia's largest aviation show in Beijing, China. SLA can create compelling presentation models that allow you to geometrically make things, which would be difficult to achieve using other manufacturing processes.
Original data supplied from Seabird was for a full-scale aircraft over 11 meters long. The data was re-sized to 1 meter in width and then sub sections were built on 5 platforms, assembled and painted to be finished in a matter of days.
At the aviation exhibition, Seabird's 3D model provided visitors with a clear and concise view of the intended design. A physical model stirs far more interest than pictures or computer files. Seabird Aviation has experienced export success by being the first aircraft purchased for the reformed Iraqi Air Force. The Seeker is now operational in Australia, USA, Middle East and Africa.
3D printing offers companies a distinct competitive advantage, whether it's a communication tool to assist in winning multi-million dollar contracts or a design validation process to reduce product development costs. Ultimately it's a tool that significantly benefits the customer.
3D Systems Cubify Goes Live
Cubify™ is a place to unleash your creativity and bring your ideas to life in 3D.
Cubify.com combines coloring book simplicity with cloud gaming fun to deliver a fun create and make experience in 3D.
With intuitive 3D Apps, rich 3D printable content libraries of games, puzzles and collections, Cubify™ turns your mobile device, tablet or Kinects into a powerful mobile digital canvas to unleash your creativity and bring your ideas to life in 3D.
Intuitive content creation, capture and customization Apps make it simple and fun to personalize creations and Cubify™ them at home on our Cube™3D printer or have them Cubified using our online printing service.
Market your own 3D creations or create new Apps for Cubify™ and earn money while inspiring others to Cubify™ their creations.
Cubify™ is a place where users can:
- Upload their models, images and apps to sell to others
- Purchase models, images and apps from others
- Get their models or those belonging to others 3D printed and shipped worldwide
- Buy 3D printed products from Cubify™ partners called brands
- Connect with others to socialize, share ideas and start new projects
The core of the Cubify™ platform is CubifyWS, a web service that allows third party developers to communicate with the platform and develop apps that extend it. These apps can be web apps or native apps for desktops and mobile devices.
The Cubify Platform
CubifyWS uses the industry standard OAuth protocol for the authentication of third party apps. This way a Cubify™ user is not required to disclose his/her user name and password to a third party app developer. Support for the OAuth protocol is built into CubifyWS
Visit Cubify.com to find out more.
3D Systems Voted Global Digital Manufacturing Leader
Design World Readers Choose 3D Systems Second Year in a Row
December 20, 2011 – 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE: DDD) announced today that it was voted the “Leader in Digital Manufacturing and Rapid Prototyping” for the second year in a row by the readers of Design World Magazine in a global competition that took place between January 1 and October 31, 2011.
The Digital Manufacturing category included 13 companies engaged in the development and manufacture of 3D printers, Additive Manufacturing systems, services and materials.
3D Systems pioneered 3D printing and Digital Manufacturing with the invention of Stereolithography®, Selective Laser Sintering and Multi-Jet Modeling. The company led the democratization of 3D printing by providing universal connectivity from 3D content-to-print through the development of the .STL file format. The company is driving the adoption of large scale custom manufacturing solutions by aerospace, defense, automotive and healthcare users worldwide. More recently 3D Systems introduced a complete range of personal and professional 3D printers and compelling design productivity tools like Alibre® 2012 for professionals and consumers, alike.
“We are honored and humbled by this global recognition from a leading trade publication such as Design World. Our unwavering commitment to democratize access to affordable 3D content-to-print solutions has been validated by users and practitioners for the second year in a row,” said Abe Reichental, President and CEO of 3D Systems.
“We are deeply grateful to the growing global community of professionals and consumers that is embracing our products and services and to our passionate teammates who share our vision, and leverage our solutions for the benefit of humankind. We remain firmly committed to democratize access to economical and intuitive 3D content-to-print solutions, making it possible for students, consumers, garage entrepreneurs and professionals to create and make."
Largest 3D Printing Technology Centre in APAC
Opening Early 2012...
3D Systems Asia-Pacific is nearing completion of its new technology centre in Victoria. 12 state-of-the-art 3D printers spread across 6 different technology platforms, representing Asia-Pacific's largest 3D printing technology centre.
Other features include:
New nylon sinterstation
New Durable Polyamide (nylon) materials for real-world physical testing and functional use.
New Accura line of SLA materials
The look and feel of moulded ABS with outstanding durability and versatility
New wax models
For digital production of direct investment casting for jewellery and precision metal parts.
3D Systems Printers:
We have a network of resellers in ANZ and many have sales offices where demonstrations for people interested in buying any 3D Printer can connect and experience.
Contact our 3D printer sales team to find out where your nearest 3D Systems sales office is located.
Phone: 03 9819 4422 or Email: 3Dprinters.asiapac@3Dsystems.com
ProJet 1000 - Personal 3D Printer
ProJet™ 1000 affordable 3D Printer
3D Systems ProJet™ 1000 is the new low cost desktop printer that makes high-resolution, durable plastic parts accessible and affordable to educators, students and professionals alike.
This low cost printer delivers beautiful ivory coloured, snap-fit, plastic parts with excellent fine feature detail and smooth surface finish at print speeds over three times faster than other 3D printers in its class.
click here to download brochure / specifications.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss ProJet™ 1000 capabilities and low cost of ownership.
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