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Creativity and Solid Modeling - Middle East Technical University

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    Procedia

    Social and

     Behavioral

     Sciences Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 00 (2011) 000000

    www.elsevier.com/locate/procedia

    WCLTA 2012

    Creativity and Solid Modeling

    *Dr. Murat Sönmez

    *Middle East Technical University Northern Cyprus Campus Mechanical Engineering Program, Güzelyurt/ KKTC, Mersin 10, Turkey

Abstract

    Creativity is being increasingly important in architecture and industrial design. Creativity at conceptual design stage of a design

    process is a requirement in today’s competitive job market. A development engineer produces concept or model that is passed on

    to the design engineer for converting into a device, process, or structure. Like the development engineer, the designer should be

    creative. Today many major companies and research institutes are using virtual technology. Before prototyping stage, the new product is created virtually in electronic environment thanks to some solid modeling softwares. In conceptual design, the object is

    shaped by making a selection among alternative solutions. This can be easily done in a virtual environment. Education system should be able to feed creative minds by offering some courses and by enabling them with some facilitates for developing their creativity in art, design and in servicing. Solid modeling softwares allow students to visualize their creations 3-Dimensionally

    with the associated physical and mechanical properties. The content of engineering drawing courses in engineering curriculum is

    to be modified for providing solid modeling techniques to engineering students. This may require additional credit. Solid modeling environment can also be used in primary and secondary education in technology and design, visual arts, geometry, 3-D art and project preparation courses.

     ? 2012 Published by Elsevier Ltd

    Keywords: creativity, solid modelling

    1. Introduction

    In today's competitive business world, it is extremely important to create new and useful products for companies. Harris (2009), the author of one of the guiding books in the literature on creativity [1], says that creativity should become a core part of a competitive company’s culture. Creative companies can find new routes to market, new types of products and services and new ways of generating income even in recession periods. The word “creativity”

    is defined by dictionaries as “the ability to create.” “To create” means turning new and imaginative ideas into reality. “If you have ideas, but don’t act on them, you are imaginative but not creative (Naiman). Creativity involves two processes: thinking, then producing. Creativity is to introduce something new and original, not like anything seen before. A product is creative when it is novel and appropriate. Although Harris highlights the reality that everybody is creative contrary to beliefs that only special, talented people are creative, a study at Exeter University (2012) concludes that excellence on creativity is determined by encouragement, motivation, opportunities, training and practice. No one reached high levels of achievement in their field without devoting thousands of hours of serious training. Creation is not linear; it is iterative (Harris, 2009). On creating a new product, alternative designs

     * Dr. Murat Sonmez. Tel.: +90-392-661-2934 E-mail address: sonmez@metu.edu.tr

     Dr. Murat Sönmez/ Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 00 (2012) 000000

    are generated that could satisfy the demands and expectations. The options are to be tested and considered against expectations. Today, at the conceptual design, product design and prototyping stages this work conveniently achieved in virtual environments, such as solid modeling environments. Education system should be able to feed creative minds by offering some courses and by enabling them with some facilitates for developing their creativity in art, design and in servicing. Solid modeling software allows students to visualize their creations 3-Dimensionally with the associated physical and mechanical properties. In some of engineering programs 2-Dimensional drawing programs are used in drawing and design courses. The content of engineering drawing courses, via which engineering students are educated on object description in shape and size, are to be modified for providing solid modeling techniques. This may require additional credit. Solid modeling environment can also be used in primary and secondary education in technology and design, visual arts, geometry, 3-D art and project preparation courses. The following parts of this article draws the attention first, to some definitions mentioned by Florida (2005) those make possible to quantify creativity, summarizes the facilities of solid modeling softwares from engineering and creativity point of view and aims to introduce solid modeling as a tool to primary and secondary school curriculum. 2. Creative Class and Education

     As it is concluded by the study at Exeter University (2012), excellence on creativity is determined by encouragement, motivation, opportunities, training and practice. There is no doubt universities play an important role in generating creative class by providing an encouraging research and development environment, by offering some courses on art, creativity, conceptual design and by supporting open-minded, talented graduates and student in their technology incubation centers. Florida, Gates, Knudsen and Stolarick (2006) draw the changing role of the university for satisfying the demands of creative economy in their article “The university and the creative economy”. They say that the university plays a role not just in technology, but in all three Ts of economic development: technology, talent, and tolerance. Universities are often at the cutting edge of technological innovation. Universities affect talent both directly and indirectly. They directly attract faculty, researchers and students, while also acting as indirect magnets that encourage other highly educated, talented and entrepreneurial people and firms to locate nearby. Tolerance in social life means being open to different kinds of people and ideas. Florida and at. al. found a considerable correlation between tolerance and the log of students and faculty. Research universities shape a regional environment open to new ideas and diversity by means of their tolerating system. They attract students and faculty from a wide variety of racial and ethnic backgrounds, economic statues, and national origins. Lucas (1988) argues that economic growth stems from talented people and high human capital, well educated and experienced people. Glaeser (2000), Berry and Glaeser (2005) find a close association between human capital and economic growth. In their study of economic effects of universities, Goldstein and Drucker (2006) found that universities affect economic growth more through the production of human capital than from research and development. Although Florida, who is a best- selling author on creativity: The rise of the creative class and The flight of the creative Class (2005), says that every human is creative, he does not deny the effect of environment and education on driving the ability of human to create something and to quantify the creativity potential of a region or a nation uses “Global Creativity Index”. This index is made up of an equally weighted combination of the “Talent Index”,

    the “Technology Index”, and the “Tolerance Index”. The talent index is a combination of creative class index, the human capital index, and the scientific talent index. He defines creative class in a society as the percentage of the region’s employees in the categories: scientists and development engineers, artists, musicians, architects, engineers, managers. The human capital index is based on the percentage of a country’s population holding a bachelor’s degree.

    The scientific talent index represents the number of researchers per million people. The technology index combines the R&D index and the innovation index. The R&D index measures R&D expenditures as a percentage of the Gross Domestic Product. The innovation index measures the number of patent granted per million of people. The global creativity index calculated by using the necessary input data in 2002 is given at the appendix A by Florida, and a part of the table is shown in Table 1. Florida, for the first time states that the USA is truly in danger of losing its most crucial economic advantage- its status as the world’s greatest talent magnet and says “America was once the

    first destination for foreign students and the last stop for creative minds; scientists, engineers, musicians, and entrepreneurs wishing to engage in the most robust and creative economy on the earth, it has now become only one place among many where cutting- edge innovation occurs.

     Dr. Murat Sönmez/ Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 00 (2012) 000000

    Table 1. The Global Creativity Index (Florida, 2005)

2.1. Restructuring Engineering Drawing Courses, Solid Modeling and Creativity

    Engineering Drawing course is a first- year course in most of the engineering curricula. It is a must course for all correctly defined engineering programs. To its classical content, the objective of this course is to teach the language of industry, which is a graphical language to be used for explaining the shape and providing the size of an object by drawing 2- Dimensional projections from, usually 2 or 3 different sides of the object orthographically over picture planes. Orthographic projections are 2-D views used to define the geometry of an object. Before 1970s the views projected over imaginary picture planes were to be copied to the surface of drawing papers by using the drawing instruments; pencil, T-square, set squares, case instruments, etc. The introduction of the computer revolutionized engineering drawing. After the development of a computer- based drafting tool by Ivan Sutherland in 1963, during 1970s, computer- aided drafting softwares were commercialized. Classical drawing instruments were replaced by virtual papers on the monitor, line creation tools, editing tools etc. By the 1980s, computer- aided drafting became fully developed as a standard tool in industry (Fig.1). In 1988 the introduction of solid modeling softwares revolutionized computer- aided design and drawing. Today solid modeling remains the state-of-the-art technology.

     Figure 1.Two- Dimensional Drawing (Orthographic Views) Figure 2. Three-D description of the object (Solid Model) of an object

    Solid modeling softwares; Autodesk Inventor, Catia, Solid Works, ProEngineer, Autodesk Revit, and so on, today provide a virtual environment where 3-D geometric models of any kind of objects can be created with real physical and mechanical properties (Fig.2). Single solid creations can be assembled to create structures, frames and mechanism by mating them with the associated geometrical and dimensional constraints and invoking the solid models of standard fasteners from parametric part library of the software (Fig. 3b, c and d). Today in solid modeling

     Dr. Murat Sönmez/ Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 00 (2012) 000000

     (a) (b)

     (c) (d) (e) stFigure 3.(a) FEM analysis in solid modeling environment, (b) a creative truss bridge design, by a team of METU NCC 1 Year Students, st(c) Simulation of motion in solid modeling environment, (d) Oil derrick pump, modeled by a METU NCC 1 Year student, (e) Solid model of an original vase, created by a pupil 8 years old.

    environment one can perform complex strength calculations, analyses by using finite element modules (Fig.3a) and can test if the mechanism will perform its function properly by using the simulation facilitates of the software (Fig.3c and d). Through compatible CAM (Computer- Aided- Manufacturing) programs, the tool paths can be calculated for complex numerically controlled machine tool (CNC) operations. By using the solid model of an object its necessary engineering drawings; working orthographic views, detail drawings and pictorial images can easily be created. It is also worth that a solid model allows additional information such as volume, mass, moment of inertia, surface area, etc. even for very complex objects. It takes few minutes to create the solid model of an object like the one shown in Fig.2. After testing the object in the virtual environment to conclude that it will satisfy its function properly, if it is determined that the design is to be modified, again in few minutes, the geometry and/ or the size of the object can be change. With the facilities of solid modeling programs mentioned, briefly here, it is obvious that solid modeling is a tool that supports creativity of development engineers, design engineers, and even research engineers. Using existing knowledge and new discoveries from research, the development engineer attempts to produce a functional device, structure, or process. Engineer defines the problem to be solved or the function of the object to be created, acquires data, identifies solution constraints and criteria, develops alternative solutions (today, in a virtual environment by using solid modeling facilities this can be done easily), selects the optimum solution and communicates the results (if the solid model is available in the environment that can be output and whenever it is demanded, the engineering drawings can be created and shared). The design process is usually iterative. Building and testing models of the creation is the primary means by which the development engineer evaluates ideas. This has been made easier to accomplish with solid modeling software.

     When the advantages of creating an object first, in a solid modeling environment before prototyping stage is stconsidered, it is concluded that the content of 1 year engineering drawing courses should be changed by adding the

    chapters to introduce students to solid modeling environment. Although the catalog name of the courses still “Computer Aided Engineering Drawing”, the solid modeling has been thought to its almost all of the facilities, stexcept FEM and CAM modules, at an intermediate level to 1 year students by using Autodesk Inventor and since

    even today majority of architects and civil engineers still use, the 2-D AutoCAD environment, in one semester in the Middle East Technical University Northern Cyprus Campus, (METU NCC) since 2008. There is one more must course on solid modeling and engineering drawing for mechanical engineering students. In this course mainly the

     Dr. Murat Sönmez/ Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 00 (2012) 000000

    standard part library of the software is introduced, assembly and animation methods, working drawing details, including geometrical tolerances and surface texture concept, and the associated CAD applications are taught. To its stnew content, the 1 year solid modeling and view creation courses encourage and support creativity of students. It is agreed that the solid modeling and drawing courses require more credit in the curriculum comparing with the credit of the ones in which still board-pencil method is used.

    2.2. Art, technology and geometry courses in elementary and secondary education and solid modeling

    Morris (2006) highlights that the roots of a creative society are in basic education. Everybody is creative but his/ her creativity is to be encouraged and supported through education and training. In Turkish education system it is one of the objectives to develop the creativity of students in 2-D and 3-D art courses, artistic drawing courses and handicraft courses. In this article, solid modeling is proposed as a tool that can make life easier in teaching and learning difficult mathematical and geometrical concepts. In the courses mentioned above solid modeling environment can be used by teachers and students, of course excluding the engineering calculation part. In Fig. 3e the solid model of a vase created by a pupil in 8 years old, after taking 2 hours training is shown. Teachers can much more easily teach some concepts and topics, which are relatively subjective at elementary or secondary school level, such as projection, perspective drawing, intersections, area, volume, mass, etc. Students can develop their creativities by creating simple and composite bodies virtually in solid modeling environment. In geometry courses, the content of elementary geometry, descriptive geometry and even that of analytic geometry can be easily supported by solid modeling softwares.

    3. Conclusion

    In today's competitive business world, it is extremely important to create new and useful products for companies. Education system should be able to feed creative minds by offering some courses and by enabling them with some facilitates for developing their creativity in art, design and servicing. Solid modeling softwares allow students to visualize their creations 3-Dimensionally with the associated physical and mechanical properties. The content of engineering drawing courses in engineering curriculum is to be modified for providing solid modeling techniques to engineering students. Solid modeling environment can also be used in primary and secondary education in technology and design, visual arts, geometry, 3-D art and project preparation courses for developing creative minds.

References

     Harris, P. (2009). The truth about creativity.UK: Prentice Hall- Pearson.

    What is Creativity? (2012). Retrieved in Sep. 2012, from http://www.creativityatwork.com/what-is-creativity/

    Florida, R. (2005). The flight of the creative class. New York: Harper Business.

    Florida, R., Gates, G., Knudsen, B., Stolarick, K. (2006). The university and the creative economy. Retrieved in Sep. 2012, from

     http://www.creativeclass.typepad.com/thecreativityexchange/files/university_and_the_creative_economy.pdf

    Lucas, R. (1988). The mechanics of economic development. Journal of Monetary Economics, 22:1, 3- 42.

    Glaeser, E. (2000). The new economics of urban and regional growth, pp. 83-98 in The Oxford Handbook of Economic Geography, edited by

    Gordon Clark and at.al. New York: Oxford University Press.

    Berry, C., and Glaeser, E. (2005). The divergence of human capital across cities, Harvard Institute of Economic Research.

    Goldstein, H., and Drucker, J. (2006). The economic development impact of universities on regions: Do size and distance matter? Economic

    Development Quarterly, 20:1, 22- 43.

    Morris, W. (2006). Creativity- Its place in education. Retrieved in Sep. 2012, from http://www.jpb.com/creative/Creativity_in_Education.pdf

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