Tinkercad, 3D modeling software that’s really easy to use!

3d coin

Today’s topic is software.

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Tinkercad is a browser-based 3D cad (computer-aided design) tool that is free to use. If you have never used a 3D modeling program, this is a great place to start.  There are easy to follow tutorials that will help you understand all the tools available in the program. The program is very intuitive and its drag and drop style is very pleasant to work with. I designed all the Zelda miniatures in this program. Here’s a screen shot of the program.

Tinker

Tinkercad was created by Kai Backman and Mikko Mononen in 2011 as a tech start-up in San Francisco. The two wanted to make a 3D CAD program that everyone could use, as other programs to them were to complicated and boring. The program had a rocky start and many improvements have been made since the launch. Unfortunately the inability to properly monetize the project and the prospect of devoting the system to another possibly more lucrative project named Airstone caused Tinkercad to announce its closure on March 26, 2013.

So why are we talking about this software if you will not be able to use it. 😦

Grave Tinkercad

NOT SO FAST!

That’s the great part you will :-)!

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You see shortly after Tinkercad announced its closure another company Autodesk came in and bought it. They not only bought it but made free some of the features that you had to pay for before. Autodesk is a long time maker of CAD software whose price would be out of range for most consumers. However, recently they have been making programs that are free to use. They call this free software initiative Autodesk 123D. The programs are fully open and free but premium accounts can also be purchased, some which include discounts or come with Makerbot 3D printers.  All the programs are also going to be linked to online printing services like Shapeways.

Tinkercad still needs some improvements and I’m excited to see how Autodesk will rise to this challenge.  Sign up for Tinkercad today and start tinkering.

Speaking of Shapeways

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They are following their newest addition to their marketing team as she moves across the country from San Fransisco to their headquarters in NYC. She has been stopping at hacker spaces and meeting makers all along the way. I had a chance to meet Savannah and hear about what it’s like to work at Shapeways. To say the least I was very impressed!! Right now she is in Ohio, follow her adventure here!!!

SavannahPeterson-5830

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Stay tuned as in time I will be reviewing many software programs including those found at Autodesk 123D. I will also be reviewing online printing services. However, if you want to start using an online printing service, the one that stands out from all the rest in price, and customer service is definitely Shapeways.

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Posted on June 7, 2013, in 3D Printing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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