We’re making things now with the laser cutter. The software toolchain I’ve been using is all free:
Draftsight (exactly like AutoCAD but free, 2D only, fine for laser cutting patterns)->Inkscape (vector graphics editing)->CamBam (CAM software)->CNC G Code Controller (RepRap/Marlin controller).
Some of the things we’ve made: a laser cut wooden puzzle:
A couple of clock faces:
And some letters that will be placed on Cayta’s sign: