RE: [rp-ml] A public survey on terminology

From: Steven Adler \(A3DM\) (
Date: Tue Aug 30 2005 - 03:36:00 EEST

I use "Additive Fabrication" or "Layer Building Process" when asked to

Steven Adler
Automated 3D Modeling, Inc

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On
Behalf Of Bathsheba Grossman
Sent: Monday, August 29, 2005 4:01 PM
Subject: Re: [rp-ml] A public survey on terminology

On Mon, 29 Aug 2005, Brock Hinzmann wrote:
> If you really don't know what Star Trek is, then you make
> your point very clearly. We often think everyone must have
> seen American TV and movies. 3-D Printer will make more
> sense to non-Trekkies than Replicator will. Even the
> Trekkies will probably expect too much from a Replicator.

Yes, I don't favor the Star Trek approach. I'm not a Trekkie myself
(Dr. Who, if you must know), so Replicator conveys little to me; and
when I see such people bandy the word, it's obvious that it conveys far
too much to them. They want to know whether it can make dilithium,
positronic brains and so forth...these aren't useful associations.

> Professionals will certainly recognize Additive
> Manufacturing and I expect most of them have refered to a
> Build at one time or another. But most will recognize
> virtually all oof the alternatives that have been
> mentioned here, because you are here and you discuss them.
> Experts will take the time to learn new terms and
> behaviors, even awkward ones (sometimes especially the
> awkward ones).

I don't believe that anyone outside the industry will have much interest
in walking through an 8-syllable sobriquet every time they want to
mention the technology. Part of making the process easy to use is
making it easy to talk about.

I would say that "Additive manufacturing" is a valid and useful term for
the specific purpose of distinguishing these processes from subtractive
ones such as CNC milling, but for everyday use it's not viable. Just
way too much work to say.


Bathsheba Grossman
Sculpting geometry
Laser etched proteins

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