(Latin) — A maker who produces finished artifacts.

A 24-element RGB lamp with advanced color effects. It was designed, 3D printed, soldered, assembled, and programmed in-house. Blue and white plastic: An articulated arm mount for an extruder.

In Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age, one of the main characters is an artifex. It's his job to design and create finished products with complex behaviors — books that narrate themselves, machines to perform various tasks, and the like.


You may have seen the term "maker" in the news in recent years. In modern vernacular, a maker is someone who can do the following:

  • Produce a physical object. This might be done through 3D printing, CNC milling, hand milling, laser cutting, or some simpler process (e.g. construction using cardboard or foam core).
  • (Optional) Create 2D and/or 3D geometry in CAD. Failing that, produce workable design drawings by hand.

Pasadena Coherent offers basic, stand-alone maker services such as CAD and 3D printing. If you need a complete product with a fully integrated design, keep reading.


An artifex is a type of maker. However, the list of qualifications is longer. Artifexes must be able to create complete products with (possibly complex) behaviors. They must be able to use CAD software, and to produce physical objects. Additionally, they must be able to do the following:

  • Create devices with behaviors. They must act on the world in a way that goes beyond passively sitting on a table, or being an inert extension of someone's limb. This may be done through mechanical design, electronics, programming, or some combination thereof.
  • Acquire or produce PCBs if necessary.
  • Solder electronic components together if necessary.
  • Deliver a complete, useful product.

Artifex services are why this company is called Pasadena Coherent. The following is offered:

  • Physical product design
    • Tools
    • Enclosures (for desktop electronics, microcontrollers, etc)
    • Fixturing (internal supports, cable management, etc)
    • Mechanisms

  • Electronics
    • Microcontrollers
    • Switches and other controls
    • Text, graphic, LED, and other displays
    • Wireless connectivity
    • Motor/robotic control
    • Custom PCBs and wiring harnesses

  • Programming
    • Device firmware
    • Input devices (buttons, switches)
    • User interfaces (text/graphical displays, including setup and menu systems)
    • Other display devices (RGB LED rings/strips/matrixes, Nixie tubes, etc)
    • Robotic control

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