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The workspace of the future is in Elon Musk’s lab. Using a variety of virtual reality and gesture-sensing tools, Musk has set up a system that allows himself and his engineers to design and manipulate models of rocket parts using just their hands. He's compared it to the Iron Man laboratory, and in many ways, it looks like just that.

But you won't need the technological expertise of Tony Stark in order to make one: Musk employs a Leap Motion Controller, an Oculus Rift, and a projector — among other common tools — in order to make the setup work. Not all of those are necessarily being used at once though. Musk says that he began with the Leap Motion, and then expanded to more advanced setups, such as one that involved projecting 3D mockups onto a translucent pane of glass.

While Musk admits that it's partially just "a fun way to interact with a complex model," he thinks that this new setup could mean far more than that. "I believe we're on the verge of a major breakthrough in design and manufacturing." Musk demonstrates how using the Leap he can fully move and rotate the model by just swiping, opening, and closing his hands.

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Jon Brodkin


The Arduino Due.

Arduino

Raspberry Pi has received the lion's share of attention devoted to cheap, single-board computers in the past year. But long before the Pi was a gleam in its creators' eyes, there was the Arduino.

Unveiled in 2005, Arduino boards don't have the CPU horsepower of a Raspberry Pi. They don't run a full PC operating system either. Arduino isn't obsolete, though—in fact, its plethora of connectivity options makes it the better choice for many electronics projects.

While the Pi has 26 GPIO (general purpose input/output) pins that can be programmed to do various tasks, the Arduino DUE (the latest Arduino released in October 2012) has 54 digital I/O pins, 12 analog input pins, and two analog output pins. Among those 54 digital I/O pins, 12 provide pulse-width modulation (PWM) output.

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Colony Test Prints – Nervous System Jessica Rosenkrantz of Nervous System has recently posted a Flickr set documenting a test run of 3D printed forms that resemble oceanic organisms such sea anemone, coral and barnacles. The prints make use of bold colour palettes to accentuate the topologies of the shapes. The diffused hues combined with [...]

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waderoush writes "In November, Lytro, the maker of the first light field camera for consumers, upgraded its viewer software to enable a feature called 'Perspective Shift.' In addition to refocusing pictures after they've been taken, Lytro audiences can now pivot between different virtual points of view, within a narrow baseline. This 3-D capability was baked into Lytro's technology from the start: 'The light field itself is inherently multidimensional [and] the 2-D refocusable picture that we launched with was just one way to represent that,' says Eric Cheng, Lytro's director of photography. But while Perspective Shift is currently little more than a novelty, the possibilities for future 3-D imaging are startling, especially as Lytro develops future devices with larger sensors — and therefore larger baselines, allowing more dramatic 3-D effects. Cheng says the company is already exploring future versions of its viewer software that would work on 3-D televisions. 'We are moving the power of photography from optics to computation,' he says. 'So when the public really demands 3-D content, we will be ready for it.'"

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[ By Steph in Art & Photography & Video. ]

Let’s hope this concept catches on: a photo booth alternative that, instead of printing photos, creates an instant 3D action figure that looks just like you. Opening to the public at Tokyo’s EYE OF GYRE gallery space on November 24th, the world’s first 3D printing photo booth is perhaps one of the most fun examples of 3D printing yet.

OMOTE 3D’s pop-up store features a conventional-looking photography studio with a modern, geometric backdrop. Portrait subjects are asked to stand still for 15 minutes while their entire bodies are scanned in 360 degrees with a hand-held 3D scanner.

This data is then entered into a computer, where the ‘photographers’ add such details as clothing color and texture. The 3D color printer then produces the original figurines, which are available in sizes ranging from 10 to 20 centimeters.

While most of the figures already produced are pretty straight-forward portraits, it would be fun to do them in custom superhero costumes and unexpected poses (assuming you can hold them for the required amount of time.)

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[ By Steph in Art & Photography & Video. ]

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3D printed figure

3D printing can be used for everything from building parts for rocket ships to printing dinosaur bones, but a company in Japan will soon be using the technology for something a bit more ordinary: to replace the humble photo booth. A temporary pop-up booth will be launching at the Eye of Gyre exhibition in Japan on November 24th, and will be open until January 14th of next year. The idea is similar to a regular photo booth, only instead of receiving a string of photos, you'll get a miniature, action figure-style 3D model.

The models come in three sizes — ranging from 10 to 20 centimetres in height — and vary in price depending on how many people are in the shot, with the more expensive options costing upwards of ¥32,000 (about...

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