0505rapf1: “DOWNLOAD MUSEUM PIECES TODAY
The ultimate vision of personal fabbers is for people to download designs from the Web and print the objects in the comfort of their own homes. While ubiquitous fabbers are still off in the future, it is possible today to download designs for physical objects from the Web. Visitors to Cornell University’s online museum of kinematic mechanisms are beginning to discover its exhibits of more than 300 historical models of 19th-century machines. Equipped with a rapid-prototyping machine (many universities have at least one), cybermuseum patrons can download designs from http://kmoddl.library.cornell.edu/ and print their own preassembled, detailed, functional replicas of machines that are object lessons in the geometry of pure motion.