DesnFab Sensorium Project Featured on Monograph…

•March 3, 2015 • Leave a Comment

I recently met Moe, author of the Monograph blog, at the kickoff meetup for the SF Digital Fabrication Group earlier this year. I had recently become an admin of the group and was giving a little show-and-tell presentation of some of my previous work. Moe must have liked what he saw because he tweeted me shortly after asking if he could feature my old Sensorium project from CCA on the Monograph. The rest is history. I would like to thank Moe for such a wonderful summary of the project. Keep up the good work Moe.

Desktop printer and 3D scanner all in one?… cool!

•February 15, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Someone recently shared the link to this press release about a new desktop fdm 3d printer that uses a rotary table and has a 3d scanner incorporated into it. The best part is that because it already has the scanner in it, it can check its own quality as it prints… COOL!

A good time to buy 3D printing stock?…

•February 15, 2015 • Leave a Comment

I ran across this article in my daily news feed. I thought some of you out there might be interested in it as well. For those of you with some extra cash right now, you might consider it as investment advice…

3D Printing Stocks Are Tanking. Is It Time to Buy Yet?

The Importance of Clean Design Models Early in the Design Process…

•February 15, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Recently, I was asked why someone like me, who is more interested in advanced 3D modeling, parametric design, scripting, digital fabrication and 3D printing, would be interested in the DD, CD and CA phases of the architectural design process. I ended up writing a rather long letter to this person and I would like to share some of those thoughts here:


My passion is for the built environment—to build things at a human scale that last and change the lives of those who interact with them every day. My long term career goal is to implement technology in a greater way into the way we design and build in the architecture industry. This has been the guiding force throughout my education at CCA, my choice of masters at the University of Michigan, and my choice for my first job out of school. I feel that in order to achieve my goal I would be best suited for a technology consultant role in a larger firm which would probably equate to a BIM manager or something of the sort. I am still not entirely sure that the position I am describing even exists in a firm yet, a BIM manager seems to be the closest to it currently, and I am determined to invent it if necessary. As such I need to have two things: one is a strong affinity and portfolio of experience with the most cutting edge technologies that most affect the design and construction aspects of architecture, the second is actual experience working in a design firm.
What I have just described may not seem like qualities that would translate to a traditional architectural role, but I am convinced that they are. So let me explain how my skills translate to every phase of the design process, and even a story of how these skills have already helped a San Francisco firm. First, in schematic design (SD) or even earlier in the chases to win projects, the goal is to quickly captures the client’s needs, address the restrictions provided by the site, local municipalities, budget and so much more. It is also the phase at which the foundations are laid for the rest of the design phases. In this phase it is necessary to create a digital model of the design that is flexible and can quickly adapt to changes based on the above mentioned inputs. It is also critical to output from this model various ways of communicating to the client the design, including renderings, animations, drawings, and models. My skills in software, advanced 3D modeling, parametric modeling, 3D printing and digital fabrication are especially suited for this phase because they allow a firm to do just what I have described with the best and greatest possible efficiency available to us today. And I have seen this proven over the last year and a half, as I have worked with various firms around the city, which has resulted in these firms winning projects. A perfect example of this is was a certain project from a San Francisco based architectural office which they recently won. During this project, I worked closely with Anthony (name changed), one of the current architectural interns in that office, to prepare files for 3D printing. At first Anthony was spending hours trying to fix the files. But after an hour workshop for this office and then later an additional 10-15 minutes one-on-one with Anthony, I was able to cut this potentially tedious and very time consuming process down to a few hours. As Anthony has continued to reach out to me and I have continued coaching him, he has continued to improve and he has become, what seems to be the go-to person for fixing files for the 3D printer in this San Francisco office.
But I still have not answered the question about the other phases of design. In design development (DD), construction documentation (CD) and finally in construction administration (CA), everything is built on the work done in the previous phases. So as you progress from SD to DD it is important that the Revit model is clean and well-built since during this phase the model will need to still be used to produce presentation materials at various phases while beginning to take on the rigor of detail development. The step from DD to CD is likewise reliant on how well the previous phase was developed and finally CA is the ultimate test in how well your process was able to accommodate and foresee every aspect of the construction of the building. This requires an unwavering commitment to detail, the ability to convert between what you are working on in digital space and the actual size of every little fastener, reveal and offset you are adding. This is why for me it is so critical to have a physical outlet for the digital design process. Through my experience in digital fabrication, I have learned the importance of even a single mistyped letter in a line of machine code or the difference 0.01 inches and 0.02 inches will have on the success or failure of a moving joint. I have also seen first-hand how a poorly built model in early phases can become disastrous and cost countless hours of wasted time later on. So in short, I strongly believe that the skills that I possess are vital to the ability of a firm to efficiently produce quality work, which ultimately affects the bottom line.

Are the big boys in trouble? (Hint: HP is not the threat)

•February 8, 2015 • Leave a Comment
Whether it is my current line of work, or just my fascination with technology, I keep up on the latest news concerning 3D Printing– mainstream and hacker alike. Lately there has been a lot of interest in HP’s announcement to enter the 3D printing market. I can tell you first hand, don’t count too much on that one (Just trust me on this one). I think the real threat is in the little overlooked guys that are figuring out how to make printers that are better than the old and out dated piles of junk that the big boys keep streaming in front of us. (Yeah I’m still a little, ok, a lot, frustrated by the DDR1 ram still in many machines… yeah, my phone has more ram than these printers!). I will also admit that I am usually the first skeptic when I hear that a desktop printer is as good as a professional printer. I’ve seen too many cases with bold claims and poor delivery. But in this case there might be some truth to these articles.
Anyway, enough ranting. Where was I. Oh yes. The little guys. I recently saw two articles about garage made printers that are competing rather well with the “professional” printers. Granted I still will be using the professional printers at work because they are still slightly more reliable and any time you are running a service bureau… and there I go again.

Anyways here are the articles:

Look out 3DSystems!

3D Pandora Full-Color Powder printer $6k vs the Projet 660 Pro $60k

Look out Stratasys!

PrinterBot vs uPrint

(Bold claims but I would like to see this PrinterBot print some architectural models. If it passes that test, I’m totally buying one.)


•February 5, 2015 • Leave a Comment

I ran across this post on Behance and had to share… Great work guys!

Makerbot hits a rough patch….

•January 30, 2015 • Leave a Comment

I don’t know how many of you closely follow 3D printing news. But for some of you that do, you may have noticed that Makerbot has been in the news a lot lately—and not always in a good light. Just recently there have been rumors about a class action lawsuit against Makerbot centered around the Replicator 5th gen—I believe this would be the first class action lawsuit in 3D printing history, but don’t quote me on that, and if you know/hear otherwise I would be curious to learn about other cases. I was curious what got them to this place? So I started going back over some of the 3D printing news that I had received over the past several months with the keyword “makerbot”. I was quickly reminded of some key events this past year and things started to make sense. So I put them in chronological order… then took a look at the SSYS stock (Stratasys stock, Stratasys is now the parent company of Makerbot)… and what I found I just had to share. Notice the correlation between some of these key events and the changes in the stock in the attached images below.


The patent wars…

JANUARY 7, 2014

Stratasys sues Afinia for patent infringement…


MAY 28, 2014

 Makerbot tries to patent some opensource ideas…



The decline…

June 19, 2013

Stratasys aquires Makerbot…


JULY 15, 2014

Home Depot begins carrying the Makerbot Replicator in stores…



Bre Pettis, CEO of Makerbot leaves Makerbot (and moves to Stratasys)… (link2, link3)


OCTOBER 31, 2014

HP annouces its intension to enter the 3D printing industry…. (I’d still like to see how this turns out, but don’t get me started on that one.)


NOVEMBER 5, 2014

iMakr removes Replicator 5th Gen and Replicator Z18 from its inventory due to dissatisfied customers…


January 27, 2015

 Possible class action lawsuit for the Makerbot replicator 5th gen…


SSYS Stock: 5 year snapshot




SSYS Stock: 1 year snapshot



Also see:


3D Printing as Disruptive Innovation in Emerging Practice… AIA Practice Management Webinar

•January 29, 2015 • Leave a Comment

I had the honor some months back of being one of three presenters during a discussion around the disruptive nature of 3D printing in the AEC industry. I recently found the recording of the full webinar on line and couldn’t resit sharing with everyone. Take a look…

Local Digi Fab Projects in Process…

•January 24, 2015 • Leave a Comment

There are some really inspiring projects in the Bay Area that are currently in construction or recently finished construction that I thought it was about time I shared with everyone….


690 Folsom, San Francisco

Office of Charles F. Bloszies

An abandoned parking garage stood as an eyesore on a prominent corner as buildings around it were transformed to meet the demand for space in San Francisco’s South of Market (SOMA) district. Boston Properties acquired the site as part of a larger development behind it and asked for a distinctive, eye-catching makeover.

The new design features a metal screen fabricated from aluminum sheet cut out using computer numerically controlled (CNC) machines driven by the files we created using the Grasshopper plug-in for Rhino, a 3-dimensional modeling program. Lower floor concrete columns will be replaced by slender stainless steel pipes with a glass storefront set back from the street for better site circulation. A gap between the original façade and the new screen will contain LED lights – at night the second floor will appear to hover above its gossamer supports.

Construction will commence in April, 2014 and is scheduled for completion six months later.

Read more about it here and here.


SFMOMA Expansion, San Francisco

Snohetta, Kreysler

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art is expanding to accommodate the growth of the museum’s audience, educational programs, and collection that has occurred since the current Mario Botta-designed building opened in 1995. The building will feature increased public circulation between the museum and the city through the creation of free, public ground-level galleries; new entrances that make the museum accessible from every direction; a central public gathering place.

The use of glass throughout the building, as well as the creation of two outdoor terraces and a new sculpture garden, further serves to open up the museum and connect it to the city.

Read more about it here, here, and here.


Apple Campus “The Spaceship”, Cupertino

Foster+Partners, Kreysler

It’s a pretty amazing building. It’s a little like a spaceship landed. It’s got this gorgeous courtyard in the middle… It’s a circle. It’s curved all the way around. If you build things, this is not the cheapest way to build something. There is not a straight piece of glass in this building. It’s all curved. We’ve used our experience making retail buildings all over the world now, and we know how to make the biggest pieces of glass in the world for architectural use. And, we want to make the glass specifically for this building here. We can make it curve all the way around the building… It’s pretty cool.

– Steve Job


Also it has been recently rumored that Kreysler is responsible for most of the casting and molding of the prefab concrete.


Prefab+3D Printing=?

•January 23, 2015 • Leave a Comment

As I watch news and blog posts on various discussions centered around 3D printing and other digital fabrication methods at the construction scale and then I read articles like the one I am sharing here. I cannot help but scratch my head and wonder if prefab and modular design is being so prevalent, why are the digital technologies that make these kinds of operations possible more readily accepted?

Another interesting thread hear is now to compare the work the Bill Kreysler is doing in the prefab arena in the San Franisco Bay Area as he is working on both the SFMOMA expansion project with Snohetta (also see both of these links, dFab Net and archdaily), and his recently rumored role in the construction of the new Apple headquarters with Fosters+Partners.

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