Augmented Spot Welding and Computer Augmented Crafts by Christian Fiebig

Published on October 8, 2012

We shouldn’t be afraid of using technology to enhance traditional handiwork. Thus, to bring craftsmanship into the modern age, he designed a computer interface that actually makes suggestions to the designer while he’s working.

In his version, the computer follows a structure in the making via a webcam and instantly generates other design suggestions based on any special parameters programmed by the designer. It’s like having a colleague in your workshop, giving you direct feedback. The experimental prototype can recognise and respond to basic structures created on-camera by spot-welding thin strips of metal together. In due time, any technique might be linked to digital technology. The Computer Augmented Crafts program accomplishes two things. First, for the designer it can point out new ways of dealing with the design process. Second, it makes the most of modern technology without sacrificing the advantages of craftsmanship.

As part of his graduation project “Computer Augmented Crafts” he developed an exemplary process of “Augmented Spot Welding” as shown at “Computer Augmented Crafts”. The models are a few exemplary results of this process. All models are based on suggestions from the same algorithm, which is generating a coherent mesh out of strips and connection points. For the development of the scale model of seating furniture parameters to add 4 points out side of the mesh where made. By that a hint for the attachment of the legs could be generated. All models try to show the bridging of the computer generated shape and crafts. The goal was to develop a tool for designers to create like humans do (by hands) with the benefit of contemporary technology.

Christian Fiebig

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