Project Two: Digital – Physical Transformations

The scope of the second project is to extend the system from project one to include physical fabrication of a generated form.  This will extend the notions of ‘transformation’ and ‘output’ to include both mathematical and physical machine processes.  This will explore the effects of incorporating the analog qualities of physical materials into a purely … [Read more…]

Project One: Instrumented Tool with Transformed Feedback

The scope of the first project is to prototype a custom instrumented tool and create a user feedback system based on algorithmic transformations consistent with the fabrication process and design intent.  This will extend our notion of ‘input’ to include more intimate measurement of human intent, and the notion of ‘transformation’ and ‘output’ to be … [Read more…]

Exercise Four: Animated Sketch

Description In this exercise students will create a digital drawing machine and project it onto a physical canvas to prompt a physical, hand drawn sketch. Students will create an algorithmically generated pattern and project it onto a 2’x2’ canvas, to prompt fellow classmates in free-hand sketching experiments. Patterns should be informed by fundamental compositional techniques … [Read more…]

Reverse Engineering Lab

Overview There is no silver bullet for making a high fidelity copy of a physical object in a digital modeling environment. Most processes take careful planning, understanding of technological constraints, and significant post processing to achieve suitable results. The following discusses relevant considerations and workflows for reverse engineering using Rhino’s modeling environment. Rhino’s Bias Rhino … [Read more…]

Firefly Workshop

Andy Payne, the developer of Firefly for Grasshopper is conducting a free webinar for CMU students. When: Wednesday, February 3rd from 1:30 – 4:30 Where: MMH 303 What: Intro to Firefly and in depth coverage of vision and Kinect components. Bring: a laptop with Rhino and the latest version of Firefly installed.

Exercise Three: Reverse Engineering

Description In teams of four students will create a high-fidelity, digital reconstruction of a found object (or fragment of an object). Object choice should be based upon observation of a compelling texture, geometry, or surface quality of the object. These observations should directly extend from the students’ previous observation and practice with hand-tools from Exercise One. Each … [Read more…]

Exercise Two: Work Station Setup

Description In teams of three, students will fabricate four table-top frames to mount electronic peripherals (e.g. digital projector, Microsoft Kinect, and external monitor) for real-time sensing and visual feedback. Throughout the semester, these workstations will provide a physical context to explore the possibilities of augmenting physical dexterity with digital tools for novel hybrid design and … [Read more…]

Day One

Agenda Introductions Brief course overview, in two parts Survey questions Logistics: Card access Web site XSEAD Blackboard Safety Machine qualification Exercise 1 introduction Introduction of tools Notebooks Pair formation Room re-organization Begin exercise 1

Exercise One: Tool Taxonomy

Description In pairs, students will be assigned a hand-tool related to a historically significant craft in the domain of ceramics, metal-work, or wood-work. Students will investigate their tool through physical experimentation, direct observation, and background research to develop intuition about hand-craft’s complex interplay between physical dexterity, material affordance, and tool geometry. Work will be conducted … [Read more…]


16-455/48-530 Human-Machine Virtuosity: Hybrid Skill, Fabrication and Design A Spring 2015 undergraduate course at Carnegie Mellon University. Tue/Thu 10:00AM-11:20AM, Hunt A10 Human dexterous skill embodies a wealth of physical understanding which complements computer-based design and machine fabrication.  This project-oriented course explores the duality between hand and machine through the practical development of innovative design and … [Read more…]