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Traditional CAD systems are “parametric,” which means that when engineers design models, they can change properties like shape and size (“parameters”) based on different priorities.For example, when designing a wind turbine you might have to make trade-offs between how much airflow you can get versus how much energy it will generate.With Instant CAD, the process of improving and optimizing the design can be done in real-time, saving engineers days or weeks.
With “automatic optimization,” you simply tell the system to give you a design with specific characteristics, like a drone that’s as lightweight as possible while still being able to carry the maximum amount of weight.
The reason it’s hard to optimize an object’s design is because of the massive size of the design space (the number of possible design options).
“Our system doesn’t just save you time for changing designs, but has the potential to dramatically improve the quality of the products themselves,” says Matusik.
“The more complex your design gets, the more important this kind of a tool can be.” Because of the system’s productivity boosts and CAD integration, Schulz is confident that it will have immediate applications for industry.
“With systems like this that make it easier to customize objects to meet your specific needs, we hope to be paving the way to a new age of personal manufacturing and DIY design.” The project was supported by the National Science Foundation.
A project involving innovation in university education is described in this paper.The teaching of Computer-Aided Design (CAD) is such a broad field of study (Asperl, 2005) that there is no consensus about what to include in the curricula, since these differ depending on the degree and on the level and age of the CAD learners.Furthermore, some studies (Field, 2004) emphasise the importance of continuing evolution in the training and educational needs of users of CAD systems.However, it can be difficult to determine the absolute best design for what you want your object to do, because there are many different options for modifying the design.On top of that, the process is time-consuming because changing a single property means having to wait to regenerate the new design, run a simulation, see the result, and then figure out what to do next.The project was carried out over a two-year period, after detecting that academic results were not very good even when the course was not very demanding.In the first year, an experiment based on the AR methodology was planned and put into practice.“It’s too data-intensive to compute every single point, so we have to come up with a way to predict any point in this space from just a small number of sampled data points,” says Schulz.“This is called ‘interpolation,’ and our key technical contribution is a new algorithm we developed to take these samples and estimate points in the space.” Matusik says Instant CAD could be particularly helpful for more intricate designs for objects like cars, planes, and robots, particularly for industries like car manufacturing that care a lot about squeezing every little bit of performance out of a product.In that study, the authors presented the results of a survey about different issues carried out on over 600 teachers.It revealed that, in Spanish universities, there was no agreement on the desirable number of students in the labs, the time to be dedicated to practical sessions, the CAD software to be used or its type (parametric or not) or on the system of evaluation.