FreeD - A freehand digital sculpting tool

Amit Zoran, Joseph A. Paradiso

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

121 Scopus citations


In this paper, we present an approach to combining digital fabrication and craft, emphasizing the user experience. While many researchers strive to enable makers to design and produce 3D objects, our research seeks to present a new fabrication approach to make unique, one-of-a-kind artifacts. To that end, we developed the FreeD, a hand-held digital milling device. The system is guided and monitored by a computer while preserving the maker's freedom to sculpt and carve, and to manipulate the work in many creative ways. Relying on a predesigned 3D model, the computer gets into action only when the milling bit risks the object's integrity, by slowing down the spindle's speed or by drawing back the shaft, while the rest of the time it allows complete gestural freedom. We describe the key concepts of our work and its motivation, present the FreeD's architecture and technology, and discuss two projects made with the tool.

Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationCHI 2013
Subtitle of host publicationChanging Perspectives, Conference Proceedings - The 31st Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Number of pages4
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes
Event31st Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: Changing Perspectives, CHI 2013 - Paris, France
Duration: 27 Apr 20132 May 2013

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings


Conference31st Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: Changing Perspectives, CHI 2013


  • Carving
  • Computer-Aided Design (CAD)
  • Craft
  • Digital Fabrication
  • Milling


Dive into the research topics of 'FreeD - A freehand digital sculpting tool'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this