This page is about creating models for 3D-printing. It's mostly geared towards Sudoers using our Type-A Machine 3D printer.
The awesomest way to create models is to write code in the OpenSCAD language, which is deterministic and flexible and very friendly to version control, but more Sudoers need to learn it.
Typically we've been creating STL files, which are wireframe/polygonal representations of a model. You can create STL files on any machine. Some popular programs are:
You can also find premade STL files:
3D Printers don't understand OpenSCAD or STL. They understand an extension of gcode, which is a decades-old language which sends direct instructions such as "heat to 100 degrees, move here, do this, move there, do that, cool down". In order to print a model you have to turn it into a series of 2D layers or "slices", using a program called a "slicer". Slicers output gcode. They need to be configured for a particular printer, with settings such as melting tempurature, bed size, fill style, overhang compensation, etc. Slicing for the Type-A Machine should be documented at its page.