Re: What's in a Name? II

From: Brock Hinzmann (SRI International)
Date: Wednesday, January 4, 1995

From: Brock Hinzmann (SRI  International)
To: Carl Deckard (Clemson  University), RP-ML, Yakov Horenstein (Electon)
Date: Wednesday, January 4, 1995
Subject: Re: What's in a Name? II
     I agree with part of Carl's observation. I like Desktop Manufacturing as a
futuristic term, but the industry has a long way to go to get there. 
     I'm not fully satisfied with Layered Manufacturing, which I think a lot of the
European researchers use, because it limits the process to layered techniques,
which some experimental technologies potentially defy and I think it implies
horizontal layers, whereas some techniques may be able to operate in different
     Anticipating Marshall Burns' entry into this discussion, I am also not excited
by Automated Fabrication, which, while technically accurate, fails to
communcate to the average audience how what we are talking about is different
from most other manufacturing automation. 
     Solid Freeform Fabrication is better: solid or physical, as opposed to virtual
(although may today be confused in the CAD world with Solid Modeling);
freeform or arbitrary, rather than strictly 2-dimensional bending, punching,
or cutting; and fabrication, which may detract from the sense of something
new, but is the word being modified, as Marshall points out. 
     Of course, my favorite was always Photo-Optic Object Fabrication (POOF), which
I wrote up for a Vapid Prototyping April Fool newsletter some years ago.
     At the risk of repeating myself to some of you, one of the terms I saw for RP
during the year was The Santa Claus Machine (Wired magazine). I have also seen
prototypes refered to as Dreamware and as Vision Things (also in Wired, by
Phil Patton, who often writes on industrial design issues for I.D. magazine).
While such terms are misleading, they represent the kind of language necessary
to get the casual listener, including CEOs and politicians, interested in the

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