A researcher from Carnegie Mellon University has created an interactive sketch tool called “Forté.” Anthony Chen’s Forté tool lets users create generative designs for 3D printing. It has been used to make 3D printed furniture, shoes, robot legs, and other items. A few years ago Encore was released which is a tool for augmenting everyday objects with 3D printed parts. Users could 3D print augmentations onto non-printed items, which makes it useful for modification rather than fabrication. Anthony Chen is yet again amazing the world with another useful tool to help 3D printer users with his Forté. It is a user-driven generative design tool that helps users make generative designs for 3D printing and other applications such as 3D printed shoes. Forté can design biologically inspired structures and is purportedly easy to use.
Users start with a simple sketch, either freehand or trace over an image such as a photo or painting. Then with minimal effort, those sketches can be turned into a complex real-life structure. The tool automatically generates a structure based on certain user-defined constraints and parameters. Forté offers three different optimization methods, adding extra structures that can reinforce the user’s sketch; creating a variation of the sketch; or expanding the sketch and then optimizing the internal material layout. These are good things for 3DShoes.com to consider because users gain a lot of “creative freedom.” They are also able to select certain areas of the design on which Forté should try different approaches while keeping tracking of the strength of a generated design.