The Story of the I-3-D Platform
I co-developed the original i-3-d platform with Marc Rogivue in 2015 after we saw an instructable that featured a simple 3D printer based on eWaste (discarded computers). Inspired, we set out to reproduce the project, only to discover that we couldn't. Steps, parts, assembly techniques, background information, even screw sizes were all missing, causing chaos and confusion in the discussion group, which featured hundreds of messages left by excited but totally confused people. So I challenged us to to re-implement the project by improving its DESIGN. The I-3-D is a re-think of that original eWaste 3D Printer in terms of its approach, materials, pedagogy and styling. We accomplished this by incorporating it into SD5946: Introduction to Sociable Robots, a class that I teach at the School of Design of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, where it was used as a skills-building exercise with a class that had NO technical background whatetver.
Diligent teamwork and persistence have resulted in the I-3-D Platform, a general-purpose educational environment that enables the curious to explore the world of 3-Axis controllers as well as construct useful devices from upcycled electronics.