Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Future Engineers Youth 3D Design Challenge

The Future Engineer Design Challenge created by NASA and ASME was a great journey for many K-12 students this past fall/winter. A new challenge will be launching this spring.

All the designs submitted can be seen in the site's gallery page. The site is very well organized to inspire youth and to engage them in a design thinking journey as they imagine a useful zero gravity space tool to be 3D printed in space.

Samples of 5th grade student concept designs in low resolution prototypes and iterated as CAD models.
Many schools participate in this design journey. I have created a collaborative doc to capture the various work flows classes used to engage in the project. I am hoping more teachers add their experiences to the doc.
  When I have engaged students and teachers in exploring this project, I have created cardboard volume forms for them to hold so that they know the maximum print size of the tool they will be designing. While the low resolution prototypes do not have to be 5cm x 10cm x 5cm, designers need to imagine that their final tool will be 3D printed at that size. Here are the design guidelines for this challenge.
Volume forms representing the 3D print size constraint of 5cm x 10cm x 5cm

Stratasys 3D Extreme Redesign Challenge

A week or so ago, we learned that both Cole and Emily are finalists in the Art & Architecture strand of the Stratasys 3D Extreme Redesign Challenge. This 3D CAD design challenge is a great opportunity for youth to participate in and feel a part of a broader community of young makers globally. For this particular youth challenge, 3D prints are not required for submission. A .stl file, a few screen shots of the CAD design, and a written statement regarding the design are the requirements.

Below is Cole's design. He used free CAD tools to design it. He used Sculptris to create a few if the more organic volume forms, Illustrator to create the insect limbs (exporting as .svg files) and then brought the pieces together in Tinkercad to assemble and design the final piece. He reduced the file size of the Sculptris pieces in Meshmixer before importing into Tinkercad. He printed the piece using the UV cured acrylic plastic frosted detail 3D printing method through Shapeways
Cole's "Insect Plate" printed by Shapeways
Cole wearing his Extreme Redesign T-shirt in front of his school.
Emily's "Bumbuku the Badger Tea Kettle"
Emily with the 3D print of her badger tea kettle in front of her school.
Emily also used Sculptris in her workflow. She created the feet, head, and tail of her design in Sculptris. She reduced the file size by reducing the triangles of the mesh in Meshmixer. and then imported the parts into Tinkercad where she completed the piece.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

3D Printed Dia de los Muertos Calaveras

Today the 3D printed skulls designed in the teen workshops were installed at the Dr. Roberto Cruz Library. Additional photo can be seen at this online album. Here is the Instructables posting.
It was nice that the skulls went up next to a Dia de los Muertos alter created by moms of students at Escuela Popular.

I created a digital textile that captured screen grabs of all the 3D designs in Tinkercad.

Each teen and the few adults who participated created a statement about their design and who it honored.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Lingraphica, a visual vocabulary for Aphasics

Today my sister asked me about my first job out of college creating visuals for a program called Lingraphica for suffers of Aphasia. Aphasia is a disturbance of the comprehension and expression of language caused by dysfunction in the brain. I Googled "Lingraphica" and was surprised to see that it now a series of iPhone apps!
A screen grab of a few of the animated verb images I created with Rucker Design for the initial version of Lingraphica. These ares still being used many years later in the updated version of the app.

This really interesting project was led by Hal Rucker and was my introduction to working with a small design team in creating software. The project was for Richard D. Steele, PhD. who was developing Lingraphica at Stanford.

In this job, I learned Illustrator, Photoshop, and an animation technique as we created a library of imagery for Aphasics to use. I learned so much on the job and really appreciate the fun experience of collaboration with Hal and the steep learning curve I went through. The actions library was particularly fun as we created simple animations to express verb concepts. I see that the animated verbs today are the same ones I helped to create with Rucker Design back in 1990. It is so cool to see this video on the product and to see that it has grown and is still being used as a communication and therapy tool.
First Lingraphica trade show T-shirt. Image curtsey of Hal Rucker.
Here are Hal's thoughts on this project when I shared this posting with him today. I had asked him what software we used for the animations. I knew that we video recorded a mime from which we then traced frame grabs!

"Wow. Yes, that was an intense and amazing project. And so impressive to see the same artwork from 1989 is still in use. Looks like they added color to our old b&w drawings. (When we did this project laptops didn't have color screens.) Corey, to answer your questions about the verbs: We videotaped mimes doing the motions, grabbed them frame by frame using Director, saved off each frame and brought it into Photoshop and hand traced each video frame. As a final step we converted the bitmaps for the screen to vector art for their print work. An early version of digital rotoscoping. I still have all the files! Here's the image we did for their t-shirt for their first trade show" -  Hal Rucker

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Teen 3D Printing Calaveras de Azucar workshops in East San Jose

Three teen designed calaveras de azucar printed in glow-in-dark-filament
It has been a fun experience to design and conduct 3D printing workshops that celebrate the holiday of Dia de los Muertos in the medium of 3D printing. The second of these two free teen workshops will be conducted on October 2nd (4:00-5:30pm) at the Dr. Roberto Cruz Library. The project is designed to engage teens in 3D printing and honoring a loved one through 3D art and writing.

Their written statements will be displayed in the library installation along with their 3D prints. I am printed the designs on my Afinia printer and the Sunnyvale Library is helping me by printing five of the calaveras. The skull we are using is here on Tinkercad. All the students' designs are in Tinkercad under hashtag #sugarskull. The lesson plan can be found here at this link and on my Instructable posting.

I dreamed up this project a year ago after attend my first 3D printing conference and purchasing a used 3D printer off of Craigslist. A few weeks ago, Afinia posted a blog story on my short journey in 3D printing.
A student explores negative shapes in Tinkercad as he builds his calavera honoring family members.
Print hot off the printer with supports still on.
Some of the participants in the first workshop in the computer lab.
A student builds her design to honor her grandmother.
An early print fail.
A sample skull design printed in glow-in-the-dark filament

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

TEDx Livermore 2014

I had the privilege of giving a TEDx presentation this past Saturday at the TEDx Livermore conference. I met amazingly creative innovators with whom I was so honored to speak. The individual speaker videos will be posted soon to the TEDx Youtube site, but for now, the TEDx Livermore livestream videos are online and mine is in Session 4 at timemark 52:43

Presenting "Where Are We? Who Are We? Finding Our Roots and Identity in Public Art"

After event with speaker Catherine Ndungu-Case.

With my sister, Lisa.

At very end of day!
I also had a gallery installation during the event. Here are a few images of that installation. It was wonderful to have my sister with me there to calm my nerves and to help me install my work. The above is a view of gallery from outside

Noodle Sipper, San Jose Japantown Mural Project panel

3D printed designs for Serving of Shapes project with the de Saisset Museum

3D printed netsuke from the Mobile Maker Cart that went out into San Jose's Japantown

Serving of Shapes panel and 3D printed bees.

1942 Shoe sculpture, Digitally printed fabric and artifacts from Japantown San Jose.
Fun designs created by my sister Lisa in the workshops during the breaks between sessions. These workshops were designed by speaker Todd Johnston.