Re: rp definition

From: Bathsheba Grossman (
Date: Fri Feb 02 2001 - 20:25:23 EET

On Fri, 2 Feb 2001, Elaine Hunt wrote:
> The Rapid Prototyping Report in 1992 defined RP as
> The Fabrication of a physical, three dimensional part of arbitrary shape
> directly from a numerical description (typically a CAD model) by a quick,
> highly automated and totally flexible process.
> Does this definition define what you do with rapid prototyping? Should it
> be expanded and if so how would you change it?

Personally, I'd contract it by removing the words "quick", "highly",
and "totally".

Quick is contextual. I've wowed clients by turning around a
Solidscape part in 48 hours; however, I'm equally sure that there are
corporate situations when four hours is way too long to wait for a
ZCorp part.

But speaking generally, my 2-D printers are "quick". When are being
fabricated step by shining a hologram into a resin vat, and it takes
four minutes, then I'll feel comfortable saying that about RP.

Degrees of automation and flexibility vary greatly with the process,
and are in no case "total". Cheest, I still have to remove support
material by hand, and keep an eye on my geometry to make sure it
conforms to what's buildable.

Besides which, a description of this kind becomes more powerful if you
chop out the superlatives. The message then becomes, RP is awesome
enough that it doesn't need salesmanly adverbs: just a description
should make the world fall to its knees.

Bathsheba Grossman (831) 429-8224
Creative prototyping

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