UI FabLab has an Epilog Mini 24 Laser Cutter. It can cut or engrave a lot of materials. Paper, Wood, Glas, … You can find the full list here. It can even engrave cylindrical elements by using a “Rotary Attachment”. Now, I’ve already mentioned the two basic purposes you can use the Epilog for. You can either cut things or just engrave on the surface. It uses a laser that makes that job pretty precise.
We started our experience by using the software InkScape. In fact, you don’t have to use that specific software, as the Epilog just needs a PDF file to start the “print”. InkScape, however, makes a quite good job in converting images that you import into Black & White (without any grey-scales). The trick to tell the Epilog when to cut and when to engrave is the thickness of a line. A thin line of 0.001 inch tells him to cut. Any other black line or object will be engraved.
I engraved an image on small paper booklet. As it was pretty easy and worked well I decided to engrave and cut a small pice of wood. However, both things will be gifts and that’s why I won’t upload pictures of them at this time.