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MIT Professor Pushes the Envelope of 3D Art and Manufacturing

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the that's-some-fancy-printing dept.

Science 58

kkleiner writes "Professor at MIT Neri Oxman's creations are demonstrating the powerful combination of 3D printing and new design algorithms inspired from nature. Just as a computer printer makes copies of 2D images, 3D printers have copied an impressive variety of objects, such as robots, chairs, prosthetics, kidneys, and jaw bones, to mention a few. But Oxman and her colleagues are discovering new design and engineering principles that will help to mature 3D printing into a technology capable of producing complex and beautiful structures impossible by other manufacturing techniques."

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58 comments

Which algorithms? (0)

snowsmann (313238) | about 2 years ago | (#40213867)

I refuse to read TFA, what are these fancy new algorithms they are using?

Re:Which algorithms? (4, Insightful)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 2 years ago | (#40213915)

I refuse to read TFA

It's like Playboy. You don't read the articles, you just look at the pictures. And say you just read the articles.

And the pictures in this article are awesome looking.

Re:Which algorithms? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214231)

Great, but where does one put one's wang?

Re:Which algorithms? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40215985)

Into your mother. Next questions?

Re:Which algorithms? (1)

joss (1346) | about 2 years ago | (#40217115)

Check out the interview with Neri, she's awesome looking too. Damn, I think I'm in love.

I can't decide which is hotter (1)

DaKong (150846) | about 2 years ago | (#40218855)

the math & science behind these objects, the objects themselves, or the woman who created them. I'm so overwhelmed with their hotness my neurons are freezing up.

Re:Which algorithms? (2)

C_amiga_fan (1960858) | about 2 years ago | (#40213997)

"Collaborating with materials science professor W. Craig Carter, theyâ(TM)ve developed algorithms that mimic patterns and processes in nature to create unique sculptures possible only through 3D printing."

I guess it's a mystery.
Fractals perhaps?

"Most patterns in natureâ"whether scales or spiderwebsâ"have some kind of logic that can be computationally modeled. Armour is bioinspired to protect by being designed specifically to a personâ(TM)s body. Carpal Skin is a prototype of a glove aimed at protecting against carpal tunnel syndrome."

Try this article from Tech Review
http://www.technologyreview.com/computing/39437/ [technologyreview.com]

Re:Which algorithms? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214687)

Shape and optimisation software. Morphology optimisation software.

Topostruct from http://sawapan.eu/ is free and simple version of the more sophisticated and expensive software.

I want (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40213945)

I want to put my dick in her mouth.

Re:I want (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214035)

"I want to put my dick in her mouth."

I hope you're hung accordingly. The lady is a leviathan.

Re:I want (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214163)

I want to put my dick in her mouth.

There's a disturbing implication there that neither consciousness nor a pulse are required.
Ick.

Algorithms (2)

mhajicek (1582795) | about 2 years ago | (#40213975)

What's the algorithm for a cat?

Re:Algorithms (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40213995)

System.out.println("meow");

Re:Algorithms (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214347)

A cat is a nonce that you place a peanut-butter sandwidth on and drop over a floor to create a perpetual motion machine. Work backwards from that and you have a cat. QED.

Re:Algorithms (1)

PuZZleDucK (2478702) | about 2 years ago | (#40215233)

Simple: just join two strings together... oh, that kind of cat... sorry, I don't do "the real world" as the kids are calling it now days.

Re:Algorithms (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 2 years ago | (#40216933)

Unfortunately for reductionists when you take a working cat apart, you no longer have a working cat. - Douglas Adams (paraphrase).

Re:Algorithms (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 2 years ago | (#40217087)

Just print a box and say that it's a physical implementation of 'SchrÃdinger's cat', so you better not open it.

Impossible? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214031)

Impossible? No. Impractical, yes. Bordering on impossible if you want to make hundreds of the same exact shape. Of course since these are objets d'art you probably don't want too many of them. Signed, authenticated limited editions maybe?

Re:Impossible? (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 2 years ago | (#40214105)

Impossible? No. Impractical, yes. Bordering on impossible if you want to make hundreds of the same exact shape. Of course since these are objets d'art you probably don't want too many of them. Signed, authenticated limited editions maybe?

At the risk of sounding like the typical /. nit-picker, I would have thought you'd have to use nanotechnology before you get close to making two things absolutely "identical".

Re:Impossible? (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 2 years ago | (#40214225)

Every particle in the universe has a GUID. Identical is an impossibility.

Re:Impossible? (1)

Genda (560240) | about 2 years ago | (#40214281)

Actually, there is the possibility of quantum duplication, so, though each particle has as you say a GUID, you could theoretically duplicate the quantum state of all those particles and since its arguably the information that makes something what it is, you would have precise copy. Sadly, just nanotechnology alone wouldn't accomplish this, though nanotechnology might in fact be required to entangle that many particles in a feasible amount of time.

Re:Impossible? (1)

PuZZleDucK (2478702) | about 2 years ago | (#40215269)

Your a C programmer arn't you? I wish you'd all stop using pointer arithmetic on the universe, you'll get a 'universe out of bounds' exception one day and then where will we all be?

Re:Impossible? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40216577)

...you'll get a 'universe out of bounds' exception one day and then where will we all be?

null and void

Re:Impossible? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214601)

Wrong. All electrons are identical and indistinguishable, and thereby follow Fermi-Dirac statistics. If they were anything other than identical and indistinguishable, the Pauli exclusion principle could not apply.

Re:Impossible? (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 2 years ago | (#40220369)

You are not thinking fourth dimensionally at all. Their position in the universe alone makes them unique. Every electron is sourced from the results of the big bang. Every electron can trace its origin back to that point, and the path that the electron took since that time is absolutely unique. Interchangeable (which is what you are really saying above) is not the same as absolutely identical. The electrons I am using to send this message to you are as ancient as the universe itself and each one took a different path to get here. Pauli exclusion proves what im saying. No two particles can exist in the same space, at the same time, ever. Thus all particles are unique if only by position.

Might use this for my own art (0)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 2 years ago | (#40214133)

My work explores the relationship between the Military-Industrial Complex and counter-terrorism.

With influences as diverse as Kierkegaard and Joni Mitchell, new tensions are synthesised from both constructed and discovered meanings. Ever since I was a teenager I have been fascinated by the endless oscillation of meaning. What starts out as triumph soon becomes corrupted into a tragedy of defeat, leaving only a sense of chaos and the dawn of a new reality.

As wavering derivatives become clarified through emergent and academic practice, the viewer is left with an impression of the limits of our future.

More... [artybollocks.com]

Re:Might use this for my own art (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214199)

Brought to you by The Postmodernism Generator.

Re:Might use this for my own art (1)

MrMista_B (891430) | about 2 years ago | (#40214203)

I'm... sorry, but I'm honestly curious. Does what you posted have any meaning? I really do want to know, because it sounds... generated.

Re:Might use this for my own art (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214327)

Follow the link and you can see that's exactly what it was. Auto-Generated Arty Bollocks... of course this kind of thing itself sets up an oscillation that only generates an even deeper relationship between Art and .....bollocks.

Ironically, I had to prove my membership in humanity just to post this nonsense.

Re:Might use this for my own art (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214333)

Man, fiannaFailMan had an showing and 5 people showed up, it was bullshit. Going mainstream brought in all the phonies.

I composed a short poem on the sick commercialization of fiannaFailMan's work:

"bubble apple":

Skateboard wes anderson trust fund
+1 lo-fi 8-bit whatever
polaroid put a bird on it pop-up vegan.

Vinyl dreamcatcher ethnic, street art viral wolf.

Whatever terry richardson VHS salvia

What a sellout

yeah (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214179)

but did he graduate med school at 12?

Oh enough already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214191)

3D printers have not printed kidneys or jawbones, get over it already. They make shapes in a single material that are used as moulds for far more complex processes. Can we PLEASE stop this senseless glorifying of what is nothing more than a process to make molds!??

Re:Oh enough already (4, Interesting)

Genda (560240) | about 2 years ago | (#40214353)

Apparently you haven't read about the difference between subtractive and additive printing. One as you say make a mold for injection. The other uses one OR MORE substances additively to create a structure. In the case of printing kidneys, hearts, or jaw bones. A solution containing cells is printed into a 3D mass to create tissues. By adding layer entire organic structures can be printed and in the near future entire organs will be printed from your own stem cells. The bones are even easier, because you only have to use organic cements that spur true bone growth as the primary structure while printing channels for blood vessels and open spaces for bone marrow. The day may come, that they can print you a whole new body.

Re:Oh enough already (2)

WillHirsch (2511496) | about 2 years ago | (#40216049)

Maybe you are right and this will happen, but if it does, nothing about the current advances in 3D printing is advancing us anywhere towards that kind of technology. Everything that's being developed right now is about sticking voxels of material together by making them hot. I don't know how cells are held together in normal biological tissue but I'm pretty sure you don't stack them together like Legos and you definitely don't melt them. The bit which crosses over, controlling where cells are positioned, is the easy bit. We've been positioning things in 3D space for decades. The current craze for making the deposition resolution smaller and the fusion process faster has no relevance to printing organs.

Re:Oh enough already (1)

khallow (566160) | about 2 years ago | (#40216641)

but if it does, nothing about the current advances in 3D printing is advancing us anywhere towards that kind of technology.

Aside from developing 3D printing.

Everything that's being developed right now is about sticking voxels of material together by making them hot. I don't know how cells are held together in normal biological tissue but I'm pretty sure you don't stack them together like Legos and you definitely don't melt them.

This wouldn't be normal biological tissue because it wouldn't be produced in the normal way. I don't see bone, muscle, or tendon being printed, because I suspect these structures get some of their strength and utility from how they are grown (eg, the elongated muscle cells and tendons). But many internal organs, such as liver, kidneys, pancreas, etc have a structure that could be printed, I think. And the cells that would make up the organ have some ability to locally organize blood flow and such. That could patch up mistakes in construction.

I think it could be made to work, just with voxel based printing systems. As to the "make things hot" there are other ways to apply materials, for example via syringe. Cells are easy to squeeze like a paste (or maybe icing for a pastry). All you need is something to fix the cells into place and a means for keeping the organ alive both during and after construction.

3D printing as it is currently practiced provides a tested system for building 3-D objects, which organs happen to be. I simply don't buy that this innovation is so paltry and simple, that it doesn't contribute to the potential technology of printing organs.

Re:Oh enough already (1)

WillHirsch (2511496) | about 2 years ago | (#40221405)

I think it could be made to work, just with voxel based printing systems. As to the "make things hot" there are other ways to apply materials, for example via syringe. Cells are easy to squeeze like a paste (or maybe icing for a pastry). All you need is something to fix the cells into place and a means for keeping the organ alive both during and after construction.

Again, squeezing the paste is the easy bit. The "all you need" part of fixing cells in place is the bit which has nothing to do with existing 3D printing technology. Squeezing out finer pastes of molten polymers at a faster rate isn't useful. We can already squeeze cells through syringes just fine.

3D printing as it is currently practiced provides a tested system for building 3-D objects, which organs happen to be. I simply don't buy that this innovation is so paltry and simple, that it doesn't contribute to the potential technology of printing organs.

I suppose this depends if you viewed 2D printing as an exciting precursor to 3D printing. That is roughly the degree of relevance that I would ascribe 3D printing as we know it to organ printing as you describe it.

Re:Oh enough already (1)

khallow (566160) | about 2 years ago | (#40228817)

The "all you need" part of fixing cells in place is the bit which has nothing to do with existing 3D printing technology.

And as I indicate with my language choice, I don't see that as a significant obstacle. Human cells tend to stick together naturally (else we'd be perhaps living puddles of goo). A more serious problem is keeping those cells alive during the process of assembly. They need oxygen and food throughout the process and they expel waste as well.

We can already squeeze cells through syringes just fine.

Exactly, which is why I don't consider that a serious issue. We have here the technological analogue to your "squeezing out finer pastes of molten polymers".

I suppose this depends if you viewed 2D printing as an exciting precursor to 3D printing. That is roughly the degree of relevance that I would ascribe 3D printing as we know it to organ printing as you describe it.

Given that 2D printing was an exciting precursor to 3D printing, I think your argument here is rather weak.

Re:Oh enough already (1)

WillHirsch (2511496) | about 2 years ago | (#40237349)

Human cells tend to stick together naturally (else we'd be perhaps living puddles of goo).

I think this quote is pretty sufficient demonstration that you don't know what you're talking about and are happy to fill in the gaps in your knowledge with flights of fancy to suit your argument. Well if the creation of rapid prototyped prostheses makes you feel any closer to the realisation of rapid prototyped than the normal passage of time then good for you, I guess.

Re:Oh enough already (1)

khallow (566160) | about 2 years ago | (#40239239)

I think this quote is pretty sufficient demonstration that you don't know what you're talking about and are happy to fill in the gaps in your knowledge with flights of fancy to suit your argument.

So you think there's something wrong with my observation?

Re:Oh enough already (1)

WillHirsch (2511496) | about 2 years ago | (#40242409)

Human cells do not "tend to stick together" any more than sintering powder or ABS pellets tend to stick together. The mechanism for sticking them together and the triggering of that mechanism is a little bit more complicated [wikipedia.org] than a bit of warming. I'm done here.

Re:Oh enough already (1)

khallow (566160) | about 2 years ago | (#40242559)

Um, no. It just means that the tech for sticking them together already exists. The human body has solved the problem. It may be a bit difficult to trigger that mechanism, but it would be foolish to consider it a huge hurdle here.

Re:Oh enough already (1)

bmo (77928) | about 2 years ago | (#40216365)

Apparently you haven't read about the difference between subtractive and additive printing

We've called "subtractive printing" machining for over a century and a half.

Hope this helps.

--
BMO

Re:Oh enough already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214461)

3D printers have not printed kidneys or jawbones, get over it already. They make shapes in a single material that are used as moulds for far more complex processes. Can we PLEASE stop this senseless glorifying of what is nothing more than a process to make molds!??

Sorry but playing all day long World Of Warcraft is not going to help you to stay informed what happens out there in the real world. So stop claiming something that is not true!

3D printers have been used to create jawbones [bbc.com].

Re:Oh enough already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40215571)

I see, so laser sintering a titanium prosthetic is the same as printing a living jawbone with tissues and cells? You guys are hopeless retards.

This Professor is HOT! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214243)

Gee! This women is HOT! This is the first professor that I have seen being hot, sexy and charismatic. When she talks about what she can do with 3D printing then her eyes are shining like there is no sun. Looks like she really is enjoying what she is doing. And she has such a nice language. Very clear voice and perfect speed while talking. This women has impressed me. I wish her luck for the opening exhibition!

Re:This Professor is HOT! (1)

cvtan (752695) | about 2 years ago | (#40214715)

Beauty and brains and FUNDING. Life is unfair.

Re:This Professor is HOT! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214773)

This right here. She's not making anything more revolutionary than someone just starting out with solid works. But because she's "fine" she's afforded a lot more than the rest of us. Normally I can pretend life doesn't suck so much but it's times like this...

Re:This Professor is HOT! (1)

jeffb (2.718) (1189693) | about 2 years ago | (#40219799)

Oh, for God's sake.

She's afforded more than most of us because she's ambitious, she's got good political skills, and she's at the Media Lab. None of these are entirely unrelated to good looks, and they're certainly related to one another. But if I really wanted to pick away at an "unfair advantage", I think I'd start with the Media Lab position -- and, for all the gripes I have about the Lab, it's not exactly a place that coddles the incompetent.

Pretty bewildering doublespeak (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214469)

Pretty objects, but I must confess I have no idea what she is trying to say in the video...

Replicator (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40214485)

Another step in the creation of replicator technology [wikipedia.org]. A small step admittedly, as are imaging, storage, etc but steps none the less. We will have similar things even if we never develop energy to matter conversions and if we ever do, things like this will help with the assembly methods..

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