To be honest I never use that feature as I don’t trust the results enough*. If your feedback indicates it has a high success rate then I could see an automated way to invoke it being extremely useful to print shops.
For me, the ability to specify and build everything up via automation would be valuable. One use case I could envision (though I’m not sure if it’s the best example):
I do a lot of work that requires minor iterations. e.g. To perfect a snap fit I may want to export ten flavors of a part where the only difference is gap spacing. Right now I can programmatically generate all the STL’s, but setting them up in Preform is still manual.
I see myself setting up the job by hand the first time**, then my workflow would programmatically duplicate it and do a “replace part” import of each variant. Often the expected changes are minor enough that tailored supports can even be reused. (As a workaround for one project that required ~40 variations of a small part, I modeled the supports in Solidworks and generated all the variants there to create a single monolithic STL for all of them).
I’m sure there are other examples where programmatically constructing or modifying a form file would be helpful to people, although I see it as a separate function (more “SDK-like”) than interacting with printers (more “API-like”). I’m betting more people are interested in replacing the kind of stuff Dashboard does than constructing their own form files.
I agree with most of the suggestions posed by others so far, like the ability to control pre-heating. Also the value in keeping confidential data local.
A few related thoughts (and elaboration) that aren’t directly about an API, but might be informative:
*Here’s an example of why I don’t use the auto-orient step (which I presume is part of 1-Click): Auto-orientation used to pick angles that work really well for a Form 2, but in a PreForm update that came out some time after the Form 3, you revamped the algorithm and it now picks orientations where more flat surface area is parallel (or near-parallel) to the build plate. On average this makes prints less tall, and I strongly suspect you did it to speed up the print times on the Form 3 and 3L (by reducing total number of layers) as the early resin profiles seemed slower than the Form 2 and users were complaining about that at the time.
**Today, when I need to be able to reliably reconstruct a .form file by hand with a different part, I often find myself carefully recording all transformations made after importing the initial model (using the rotate by x-degrees function rather than freehand). It would be incredibly helpful if PreForm had an advanced feature that showed you the final rotations and whatnot vs datum, to alleviate the need to track this by hand.
***If the Form 2 is included in scope, I would REALLY love the ability to experiment with things like laser power for initial layers (to reduce the amount of bleed on those layers at the cost of adhesion), and reduce how often it pauses for the lengthy “sensing resin” step that occurs between layers - would speed up prints tremendously.