Sometimes I have to put text on a path

Friday, May 23, 2008

STL openSource applications


MeshLab is an open source Windows and Linux application for visualizing, processing and converting three dimensional meshes to or from the STL file format.

MeshLab Homepage

MeshLab, started in late 2005, is a free and open-source general-purpose mesh processing software program; the system is aimed to help the processing of the typical not-so-small unstructured models that arise in the pipeline of processing of the data coming from 3D scanning. MeshLab is oriented to the management and processing of unstructured large meshes and provides a set of tools for editing, cleaning, healing, inspecting, rendering and converting these kinds of meshes.

The automatic mesh cleaning filters includes removal of duplicated, unreferenced vertices, non manifold edges and null faces. Remeshing tools support high quality simplification based on quadric error measure, various kinds of subdivision surfaces and two surface reconstruction algorithms from point clouds based on the ball pivoting technique and on the Poisson surface reconstruction approach. For the removal of noise, usually present in acquired surfaces, MeshLab supports various kinds of smoothing filters and tools for curvature analysis and visualization.

MeshLab also includes an interactive direct paint-on-mesh system that allows to interactively change the color of a mesh, to define selections and to directly smooth out noise and small features.

Version 1.1.0 also includes a tool for the registration of multiple range maps based on the Iterative Closest Point algorithm.

MeshLab is available for most platforms, including Windows, Linux and Mac OS X intel only. The system support input/output in the following formats: PLY, STL, OFF, OBJ, 3DS and COLLADA.

------------Art of Illusion

Art of Illusion is a free, open source 3D modelling and rendering studio. It is written entirely in Java, and should be usable on any Java Virtual Machine which is compatible with J2SE 1.4 or later.

File Handling

Mac OS X

Art of Illusion requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later with all software updates installed.
  1. Download the Art of Illusion installer.
  2. Double-click it to mount the disk image, then copy the "Art of Illusion" folder to your Applications folder.
  3. (optional) Download the Java Media Framework. Select the "Cross-platform Java" version. After you download it, find the file jmf.jar and move it to /Library/Java/Extensions. The rest of the downloaded files are not needed, and can be deleted. (This step is not required, and most of Art of Illusion will work normally without JMF. You will not be able to save animations in Quicktime format, however, if it is not installed.)
  4. To launch the program, double-click the Art of Illusion icon.


RepRap is an OpenSource project that uses STL file input and generates solid objects as output.

On peut utiliser des parties de ce projet pour la gestion et modif des STL.

  • The STL Format - Standard Data Format for Fabbers: The STL Format
  • How to Create an STL file Guide to exporting STL files from various CAD packages (courtesy of ProtoCAM)
  • SolidView SolidView is a commercial STL manipulation package that has a Lite version available (under provision of a business email address) for STL viewing.
  • Freesteel with a web-interface where you can upload an STL file and render it into an image in your browser.
  • ADMesh is a GPLed text-based program for processing triangulated solid meshes, and reads and writes the STL file format.


  • remarque: Mathematica sait lire du STL.


SolidView lite




Version Up to


ACIS/SAT .sat, .sab ACIS/SAT Data v18 - Yes*
Assembly Component Definition .acd SolidView Any - Yes
Autodesk DXF .dxf 2004 - Yes
Autodesk DWG .dwg 2004 - Yes
Catia V4 .cat, .exp, .model Native Catia V4 Data V4 - Yes*
Catia V5 .catpart, .catproduct Native Catia V5 Data R7 to R17 - Yes*
I-Deas Web Access .mca, .idi I-Deas MCA v11NX - Yes*
Initial Graphics Exchange Specification .igs, .iges IGES 3D Any - Yes*
Object File .obj Any Yes Yes
Parasolid .x_t, .x_b Parasolid text and binary Data v19 - Yes*
Pro/Engineer .prt, .asm Native PTC Pro/E Data WildFire 4 - Yes*
SolidEdge .par, .dft., .asm, .psm Native SolidEdge Data v20 - Yes*
Solid File Exchange .SFX SolidView Any Yes Yes
SolidView Solid .sv SolidView Any - Yes
SolidWorks .sldprt, .sldasm Native SolidWorks Data 2008 Yes Yes
Step .step Native PTC AP203/AP214 - Yes*
Stereolithography .stl Any Yes Yes
Unigraphics .prt Native UG Data
parts and assemblies
NX 5 - Yes*
VDAFS .vda Any - Yes*
VRML .wrl 1.0 / 2.0 Yes Yes

*Optional add on for SolidView/Pro. Click here for pricing.

SolidView/Lite SolidView SolidView/Pro SolidView/Pro RP
All Versions Have Fully Functional Demos N/A Free for 15 days Free for 15 days Free for 15 days
Description FREE Low Cost Markup Import CAD data Import CAD data &
Rapid Prototyping Tools
View STL, VRML, OBJ, SolidWorks Yes Yes Yes Yes
Print STL, VRML, OBJ, SolidWorks Yes Yes Yes Yes
Measure STL, VRML, OBJ, SolidWorks - Yes Yes Yes
Modify STL, VRML, OBJ - Yes Yes Yes
Save STL, VRML, OBJ - - Yes Yes
View, Print, Measure, Modify, and Save DXF - - Yes Yes
View SFX files Yes Yes Yes Yes
Print SFX files Yes Yes Yes Yes
Measure SFX files Yes Yes Yes Yes
Combine 3D data - Yes Yes Yes
Edit/Save SFX files - Yes Yes Yes
Replay SFX 3D Slide Shows Yes Yes Yes Yes
Create new SFX files - - Yes Yes
Modify SFX data Yes Yes Yes Yes
Publish SFX files - - Yes Yes
Export section data - - Yes Yes
View 2D raster files (tif, bmp, jpeg, etc.) - - Yes Yes
View 2D vector files (cgm, hpgl, wmf, etc.) - - Yes Yes
Optional CAD Interfaces - - Yes Yes
Optional Network Licensing - - Yes Yes
Move, copy and scale 3D data - - Yes Yes
Verify STL data - - Yes Yes
Repair STL data - - - Yes
Split STL data - - - Yes
Shell STL data - - - Yes
Create drain holes - - - Yes
Automatic RP part layout - - - Yes
Manual RP part layout - - - Yes
RP build time estimator - - - Yes
Optional automatic RP support generator - - -


STL interchanging data between CAD/CAM system


There are many other file formats capable of encoding triangles available, such as VRML, DXF, but they have the disadvantage that it's possible to put things other than triangles into it, and thus produce something ambiguous or unusable.

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