December 7, 2019 News Magazine

‘Carpentry Compiler’ turns 3D models to instructions on how to build them

Even to an experienced carpenter, it may not be obvious what the best way is to build a structure they’ve designed. A new digital tool, Carpentry Compiler, provides a way forward, converting the shapes of the structure to a step-by-step guide on how to produce them. It could help your next carpentry project get off the screen and into the shop.

“If you think of both design and fabrication as programs, you can use methods from programming languages to solve problems in carpentry, which is really cool,” said project lead Adriana Schulz from the University of Washington’s computer science department, in a news release.

It sounds a bit detached from the sawdust and sweat of hands-on woodworking, but they don’t say “measure twice, cut once” for nothing. Carpentry is a cerebral process more than a physical one, and smart, efficient solutions tend to replace ones that are merely well made.

What Carpentry Compiler does is codify the rules that govern design and carpentry, for example what materials are available, what tools can do, and so on, and use those to create a solution (in terms of cuts and joins) to a problem (how to turn boards into a treehouse).

Users design in a familiar 3D model interface, as many already do, creating the desired structure out of various shapes that they can modify, divide, pierce, attach, and so on. The program then takes those shapes and determines the best way to create them from your existing stock, with the tools you have — which you can select from a list.

Need to make the roof of your treehouse but only have 2x4s? It’ll provide a recipe with that restriction. Got some plywood sheets? It’ll use those, and the leftovers contribute to the base so there’s less waste. By evaluating lots and lots of variations on how this might be accomplished, the program arrives at what it believes are the best options, and presents multiple solutions.

“If you want to make a bookcase, it will give you multiple plans to make it,” said Schulz. “One might use less material. Another one might be more precise because it uses a more precise tool. And a third one is faster, but it uses more material. All these plans make the same bookcase, but they are not identical in terms of cost. These are examples of tradeoffs that a designer could explore.”

A 24-inch 2×4 gets cut at 16 inches at a 30-degree angle.

That’s really the same kind of thing that goes on inside a woodworker’s brain: I could use that fresh sheet to make this part, and it would be easy, or I could cut those shapes from either corner and it would leave room in the middle, but that’ll be kind of a pain… That sort of thing. It can also optimize for spatial elements, if for example you wanted to pack the parts in a box, or for cost if you wanted to shave a few bucks off the project.

Eventually the user is provided with a set of instructions specific to their set of tools. And the carpenters themselves act as the “processor,” executing operations, like “cut at this angle,” on real-world materials. In Carpenter Compiler, computer programs you!

The team presented their work at SIGGRAPH Asia last month. You can read more about the project (and learn how you can try it yourself) at its webpage.


Source: TechCrunch

Tags: in Uncategorized
Banner
Related Posts

Google’s Titan security keys come to Japan, Canada, France and the UK

July 31, 2019

July 31, 2019

Google today announced that its Titan Security Key kits are now available in Canada, France, Japan and the UK. Until...

Facebook staff demand Zuckerberg limit lies in politcal ads

October 28, 2019

October 28, 2019

Submit campaign ads to fact checking, limit microtargeting, cap spending, observe silence periods, or at least warn users. These are...

Sea is raising up to $1.5B for its Shopee e-commerce business in Southeast Asia

March 6, 2019

March 6, 2019

Alibaba is about to get a jolt from its largest rival in Southeast Asia. Sea, the Nasdaq-listed business, is raising...

Ford VP challenges Tesla to a fair F-150 vs Cybertruck tow battle

November 25, 2019

November 25, 2019

Elon Musk took a big swipe at Ford during the unveiling of the Cybertruck. Mid-presentation, he played a video of...

Google Cloud launches Bare Metal Solution

November 20, 2019

November 20, 2019

Google Cloud today announced the launch of a new bare metal service, dubbed the Bare Metal Solution. We aren’t talking...

European smartphone shipments grew in Q3, driven by Samsung

November 25, 2019

November 25, 2019

Europe bucked global smartphone stagnation in the third quarter, marking an 8% year over year growth in device shipments. That...

On the road to self-driving trucks, Starsky Robotics built a traditional trucking business

June 7, 2019

June 7, 2019

More than three years ago, self-driving trucks startup Starsky Robotics was founded to solve a fundamental issue with freight —...

Why commerce companies are the advertising players to watch in a privacy-centric world

July 15, 2019

July 15, 2019

Justin Choi Contributor Share on Twitter Justin Choi is the founder and CEO of Nativo, which empowers brands and publishers...

More passwordless logins are coming to Android

February 25, 2019

February 25, 2019

The FIDO Alliance and Google today announced that Android (from version 7.0 up) with the latest version of the Google...

Twin astronaut study suggests interplanetary travel may not be a health risk

April 11, 2019

April 11, 2019

The human body “remains robust and resilient” after almost a year in space, according to a long-term, multi-institutional study of...

Unagi is the iPhone of scooters you actually buy

October 1, 2019

October 1, 2019

Can you never find a scooter to rent when you need one? Here’s a radical idea. Buy one. While Bird,...

DefinedCrowd offers mobile apps to empower its AI-annotating masses

May 21, 2019

May 21, 2019

DefinedCrowd, the Startup Battlefield alumnus that produces and refines data for AI-training purposes, has just debuted iOS and Android apps...

Houzz resets user passwords after data breach

January 31, 2019

January 31, 2019

Houzz, a $4 billion-valued home improvement startup that recently laid off 10 percent of its staff, has admitted a data breach....

Uber Air picks Melbourne as its first international launch city

June 11, 2019

June 11, 2019

When Uber first announced Uber Air, it intended for Dubai to be its first international city. That changed last year...

Sonos partners with Ikea and announces $99 speaker

April 8, 2019

April 8, 2019

Ikea and Sonos are partnering on a a new range of connected speakers that will be available in August 2019....

Comments
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *