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figuring out things with ORIPA

I have been playing with an origami pattern design tool called ORIPA, made by Jun Mitani (his blog here).

Once I figured out how to get it properly running on my Mac, it was pretty easy to figure out. here’s a handy tip for that. it needs latest java release 1.5.0; the mac still uses 1.4.2 by default, so you have to call the 1.5.0 version specifically to execute the runtime. I did this by stashing the jar file (the packed program file) in my origami directory, and created this shell script:

/System/Library/Frameworks/JavaVM.framework/Versions/1.5/Commands/java -jar ~/origami/oripa012.jar

which I saved as /usr/local/bin/oripa on my machine; although you could just as easily save it to your desktop as a clickable icon.

anyhow, that bit of stuff aside, I was having problems getting it to properly fold some of my hexagonal design right- but I had seen other files which were more complex and folded quite well. So I uploaded some simple examples to the upload board for ORIPA, and I saw today that Mitani-san had written some information on his blog about how to fix the problem.

here’s his commentary from yesterday; it’s probably quite a bit more helpful if you run it through babelfish first.

basically, I was starting with this pattern:

and it was getting stuck. that was because there were several lines in wrong places, and 2 lines that had essentially 0 length- they were throwing things off. He suggested opening it up in a text editor and changing the coordinates of those lines so they can be properly deleted, which then allows it to fold properly.

It did so for him, and once I tried the same thing it worked for me also.

I’m not sure I can properly express how absolutely cool this program is- it lets you plot out all your crease lines and then not only can you export it as DXF (for import into tools like FreeHand or Illustrator) but you can hit the button and see the final folded rendition of your piece!

I’m working on a larger (permanent) page for this site on how to use it, and some english links for the various bits needed to make it run, but by all means check it out if you are so inclined. the download page is here; you’ll need to grab the oripa012.jar file, and for Windows you’ll need the latest version of the Sun Java Runtime Environment. You can grab the english version here; you’ll want the link titled “Download JRE 5.0 Update 6” and then pick either the “Windows Offline Installation, Multi-language” or “Windows Online Installation, Multi-language”, depending on what kind of internet connection you’re using.

once you have that installed, it’s just a matter of double-clicking on the “oripa012.jar” file on your desktop to run it. it’s all in japanese, of course, so it takes some fiddling to use, but there aren’t a ton of options and the tools have relatively self-explanatory buttons. I hope to get a more comprehensive writeup done later for this wonderful program.

UPDATE: Mitani-san has released a localized english version of ORIPA! Here’s the English Language Page; ORIPA version 0.16 is the latest at this time, and is in english. -Eric (2005/02/16)


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