Linknode launches 3DTry.it visualisation tool at 3D Printshow London
By Simon Nias Friday, 19 October 2012
Stirling-based software developer Linknode has today launched a cross-platform preview application for use by 3D printers, designers and their clients at the 3D Printshow London 2012.
The tool, 3DTry.it, which is built on Linknode's GIality platform, allows users to view a markerless, 360-degree visualisation of their 3D design before it is printed.
The software can accept most 3D design and print file formats, including .sdx and .stl, and is compatible with a range of android smartphone and tablet computers.
Users can view the 3D model on a plain background or superimposed on an image taken with the camera on their mobile device, and from any angle.
"Most 3D visualisations are only rendered from one angle, but this will let you view the model from any angle," explained Linknode director Dr Crispin Hoult.
"The platform uses geospatial data from the compass, accelerometer and gyroscope that are standard in these devices to intuitively alter the angle depending on the orientation of your device.
"So if you point the smartphone down the view will rotate so you're viewing the top of the 3D model. You get a level of interaction with digital models that you can't have with a static PDF."
Hoult said that the software could be used by designer, printers and brand owners as part of a collaborative approval process, allowing anyone in the supply chain to view and sign off the design while on the move.
Implementation of the software, which can be embedded in an existing app – such as an storefront, to allow 360 viewing of products – or offered as a standalone solution will cost from around £5,000 upwards depending on the number of items.
Hoult added that while 3D printing was still some way off being a mainstream industry, the potential for the technology was clear to see. "It's kind of where the internet was 15 to 20 years ago," he said.
"Some people see it growing to the stage where you have a 3D printer in every home for printing components or small everyday items, but I think it's more likely to be used by companies for localised on-demand printing of goods.
"That way you don't have to manage stock and you can regulate quality to a higher level because you're building on-demand and the transport cost and environmental impact will be lower because you only have to ship locally."Tweet
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