You must run software, but mach3 is one of several choices. It's a good choice, that's for sure. Price and performance, it probably the best. You will need other software too.
I use Mach3 and I use Vectric's VcarvePro. These two software products are a MUST for me. I use them both, I use them every time I turn on the CNC machine.
Both software have their own Users Forums to help with the technology, and to inspire the designer.
Join them both for free, you don't have to own their software either.
http://www.vectric.com/forum/index.php (Vectric's VcarvePro Forum) CAM
http://www.machsupport.com/forum/index.php (Mach3 Forum) Control.
Hope this helps. Good luck cutting model airplane parts. A couple years ago, I cut some balsa ribs. Go here to find the thread. http://www.cnczone.com/forums/showth...lsa#post319428.