Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Mechanical Engineering, Materials Science, Production Engineering, Mining and Metallurgy, Traffic Engineering, Precision Mechanics
Abstract A framework for enhancement of conceptual tools for rapid computational prototyping of manufacturing entities is presented. A typical manufacturing entity (i.e. manufacturing system and/or individual part) is hierarchically represented in a computer and coupled with applications by dividing its information content into three computational elements: data, drawing and user interface. The information content is divided in this way because each of the above elements has a sufficiently distinct requirement for an efficient computer implementation. Although independent advances have taken place in computer data representation by highly efficient and focused data structures, in drawing representation by sophisticated computer graphics, as well as in user interface by a variety of interface media, these advances cannot be directly utilized in the design of a manufacturing entity unless they are efficiently integrated by relatively small programming effort as is deseribed in this rapid prototyping framework. The framework is implemented in object-oriented programming. A breadth of application areas for the framework is illustrated, and specific details are illustrated with reference to depth in one application area.
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