Re: The History of RP!

From: Michael Rees (
Date: Sun Sep 05 1999 - 19:12:57 EEST

Marshall Burns wrote:
> >I'm trying to find information on the history/development of RP prior
> >to the patent being issued for the stereolithography machine in March
> >1986, and the formation of 3D systems.
> I've found the postings on this subject in the last few days very
> interesting, including comments taking us all the way back to the Egyptians.
> In my book, I define a fabricator as a device that can make a 3-D shape
> automatically, without human effort after creation of the design. The making
> by skilled craftspeople of coiled pottery and laminated topographic maps are
> examples of MANUAL fabrication, from which the developers of automated
> fabricators have learned and modeled their technologies.

Dear Marshall,

Interesting point marshall, but if we study "automatic" I think you'll
agree that in different contexts, the word has different meanings. For
example, none of these machines are truly automatic. They must be
adjusted and set up by hand, man, computer. Also, to set a man cutting
shapes and assembling them by hand is automatic for the designer or head
of an enterprise. You order it and come back the following day and its
done. (Automatic in the sense that the enterprise is the "auto") Indeed,
a man (9axis device) manually stacking sections is perhaps more
automatic than a machine, if that man is sufficiently disciplined and

Its not a pretty picture to consider workers machines, but its not an
unusual point of view.

michael rees		effective immediately
suite Number 301 
1015 Washington Ave	314 494 7393 
St. Louis Mo 63101

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