Mobile Fabrication (UIST 2016)

Thijs Roumen, Bastian Kruck, Tobias Duerschmid, Tobias Nack, Patrick Baudisch

We explore the future of pervasive fabrication, e.g. what it would be like if you could fabricate all the time, everywhere and on the go. Our main focus is on tackling the "on the go" question, what if we can solve (mechanical) problems right when they arise? For digital problems we have seen how people first tackled them using large hardware, one would plan ahead and solve the problem in offices on a large computer, later mobile computing showed the power of having massive amounts of people quickly solving small problems as they encounter them. With fabrication hardware we see similar trends, currently most fabrication happens on large slow machines which require upfront planning and thus expertise to be used, however as hardware becomes smaller and easier to handle we foresee that we may be able to carry our fabrication hardware with us in the near future. As a result many people could solve mechanical problems as they arise. We studied this by making two renditions of small printers that users can carry with them and explore what people can and want to make on the go.

link to paper