The team at QalamSila--creator Guillaume Crédoz, Nicolas Reeves, Roy Massaad, Chady Karlitch, and Ragheed Abi Hassan–say QalamSila 2.0 will be a mobile-device-enabled 3D construction app aimed at letting creative users build nearly anything using their 3D printed connectors and wood pencils.
Based in Beirut, Lebanon, the team say the toy’s name derives from Arabic origins and means “pen” – qalam – and “connected” – sila.
Kristin Krause of RapidManufactory says that pencils of different lengths with a wide variety of more than 100 connector types such as wheels, suspensions, rotating joints, and pinion gears can be used to construct incredibly versatile and functional toys.
Now the QalamSila team is running a Kickstarter campaign to raise the funds necessary to bring their 3D construction system to the next level by creating a mobile app. They’re seeking to raise $75,000 CAD (about $60,875 USD) before the campaign ends on August 3rd.
The QalamSila system already includes a library of more than 100 connectors that can be used to create unique toys or prototypes. The small multi-national team has also created projects such as Big Voxel, TheObssessiveDrafter, and Hyperstat, and they also offer professional services ranging from 3D printing to architectural design.
They say the plan is to extend QalamSila to a wider audience through an app which makes it possible to both create and discover the wide variety of existing custom QalamSila creations. They say the project will also focus on creating a “digital ecosystem for a community of makers.”
Likening it to a fusion of 3D games like Minecraft and professional apps like 3ds Max, the developers say the parts themselves were specifically designed to be simple to use.
They say that once a maker has settled on a finished product, the app will allow for ordering and pricing a given custom construction based upon the amount of connectors needed. The company will then 3D print the required parts and send them back – with or without the pencils.
Core features of the mobile app will include Android and iOS support, varying account levels, the placement of connectors and pencils manually and the ability to edit their properties with transform, lock and length parameters, camera controls, validation tools, common CAD tool features such as Snapping and Undo, the ability to share creations and view and edit the creations of others and ordering functionality.
The app will be free and unlocking more advanced groups of connectors will require enough participation to reach what they call Journeyman or Master Craftsman levels through an account balance of Q-Units. They say Q-Units are a sort of virtual credit system. To refill the balance, a user simply buys online bundle packages very much like online game gold and coin currency systems function.
The existing QalamSila product is already available online and they’ve developed a a simple proof-of-concept prototype which allows users to assemble and edit basic QalamSila connectors and then save and load them locally. The funds will be used to take that prototype into a fully fledged, user friendly mobile app.
Rewards include discounted Q-Units for early funders, QalamSila t-shirts, signed thank you letters, gold-plated QalamSila parts, and even a trip to visit the developers at their office and workshop.
RapidManufactory has already built a working pipeline to produce and ship QalamSila worldwide. You can check out the Kickstarter campaign, and visit the QalamSila site for a look at what the systems can do.
Will you support the QalamSila Kickstarter campaign? Let us know in the QalamSila Kickstarter forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the team’s Kickstarter video, as well as more images, below.
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