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Evolution of the Turtle Shell #3DThursday #3DPrinting

While this post is certainly 3D animation rather than 3D printing, I found this a particularly inspiring demonstration of the evolution of a design (well, a creature!) over eons in terms of very small changes. Also, having spent more than my share of the last four years printing Skimbal’s Turtle Shell Racers, I tend to associate turtle shells with 3D printing. Don’t you? 😉

Studying this model, what ideas do you have about “evolving” the enclosures that you have created for your electronics projects? I will be keeping this video handy as a model for a design iteration project to see how it helps/hinders.

From the video description posted by Tyler Lyson. Thanks to Dave Pentecost for the tip.

Evolution of the turtle shell based on developmental and fossil data. This animation is based on the work of Dr. Tyler Lyson, currently at the Smithsonian Institution. The animation shows how various fossils, particularly Eunotosaurus and Odontochelys, bridge the morphological gap between a generalized animal body plan to the highly modified body plan found in living turtles.

The paper, published in Current Biology, can be found here.

Animation by Stroma Studios.

Read more.


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Every Thursday is #3dthursday here at Adafruit! The DIY 3D printing community has passion and dedication for making solid objects from digital models. Recently, we have noticed electronics projects integrated with 3D printed enclosures, brackets, and sculptures, so each Thursday we celebrate and highlight these bold pioneers!

Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!

The Adafruit Learning System has dozens of great tools to get you well on your way to creating incredible works of engineering, interactive art, and design with your 3D printer! If you’ve made a cool project that combines 3D printing and electronics, be sure to let us know, and we’ll feature it here!


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