Our first developer’s blog

John Xia, one of our summer interns, wrote the following blog post about developing an easier way to 3D print.

I’m currently an intern at Mission Street Manufacturing.  We’re a 3D printing company that’s trying to streamline 3D printing. If you’re not familiar with 3D printers, imagine building up an object with a hot glue gun, carefully squeezing out layer upon layer of plastic. Now imagine a robot doing that.

One of the problems we are fixing is that you have to jump through a ton of hoops to print something. Making a 3D model is hard. Once you have a model you have to turn that into instructions for your printer, and once you have the instructions, you have to actually print them. We hide most of this on our server so nobody has to deal with it.

You can’t hide the actual modeling, so we’re making tablet apps that make simple 3D modeling really simple. We’ve got a few in the works. Let’s take a look at one that turns your finger drawings into real things that you can hold. Its code name is FourthApp.

First you draw something. It’s kind of like Paint. No spray-can, though.

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Then you hit print preview. We turn it into a 3D model and send it back down for your perusal:

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If it turns out satisfactorily you can choose to print your part:

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Which ends up looking like this:

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You are, no doubt, curious as to how this all works. I’d love to tell you, but first we need to understand the basics.

Click here to read the rest of this post on John Xia’s personal blog.

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