Very often I use openscad for designing projects for the laser cutter. One common problem faced is that we need to position the 2d shapes in a panel for production in a laser cutter.
Nowadays I manually position the 2d shapes. Ideally I think it would be awesome to have an openscad module that implemented an optmization algorithm to have the best usage of the laser cutter panel.
I would be happy to mentor this as a google summer of code project if there's any student interested in implementing it. Otherwise, please consider it as a usual feature request. I may even try implementing it someday when I have some free time.
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here's the proposed syntax:
where all the modules used are representing 2d shapes and the [2000,1000] parameter describes the size of the rectangular panel where you want to place the 2d shapes in an optimized manner.
I'm not convinced that such functionality belongs in a modeling tool.
However, I've been working a bit on a laser cutter software: https://github.com/metalab/ctrl-cut
One of the features on the wishlist there is to be able to automatically optimize cutting jobs, both in terms of cutting time and material usage.