Nilay Savant
Blog by Nilay

Blog by Nilay

Design 3D robots in the browser: Announcing bot-forge.com

Design 3D robots in the browser: Announcing bot-forge.com

A highly simplified CAD web-app to design robots using pre-created interactive 3D parts

Nilay Savant's photo
Nilay Savant
ยทMay 15, 2022ยท

2 min read

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check it out ๐Ÿ‘‰ bot-forge.com

Why BotForge ?

As an avid DIY builder I often find myself coming up with cool ideas around building machines especially robots ๐Ÿค–. One of the biggest barriers to building robots is getting the hardware and making it work for you the way you want. Hardware parts aren't free unlike open source software ๐Ÿ˜… and require you to carefully plan what you want to build before you place an order for the part(s). I often end up creating a spreadsheet of all the parts and using complex 3D CAD software like Blender to plan out the design of the robot.

bot-forge.com aims to make this design process easier and accessible.

How does it make designing easier?

  • BotForge is a web app that runs in your Browser. You do not need to install any heavy 3D application to design a robot.
  • You are provided with 3D interactive parts that are already modeled and ready to use. All you have to do is to connect these parts together to prototype your robot!

Screenshot from 2022-05-10 22-37-07.png

What other features does it offer ?

  • The 3D parts available on the store are highly customizable and interactive.
  • Each part comes with controls to manipulate its position/orientation and if the part allows for a certain mechanical property(s) (eg. a motor has a rotating rotor), it allows it to be controlled as well (eg. the rotation of the rotor can be changed). This enables interesting visualizations and insights.
  • Any mechanical contraption that can be expressed as a parent-child relation can be simulated in BotForge. For example in a robotic arm containing a servo motor and an arm. The parent is the servo motor, while the arm is the child attached to this servo motor's rotor. Thus moving the rotor also moves the arm. This makes the simulations more realistic and allows for interesting possibilities in the future.

editorFullComplexContraptionView.png

When can I start using BotForge ?

BotForge is in alpha but is open to users at bot-forge.com. Please note that the app is in its earliest stages. Many features may break or not work. Parts on the store are limited and will be constantly added and updated. As a consequence it may result in your projects not working after some time(if the parts used become outdated). I'm working on making it stable with time.

Please give your feedback or report bugs here.

Updates and dev logs on BotForge

I will be posting updates and dev logs on my journey building BotForge. Please do subscribe to my newsletter for updates and follow this space.

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