Sunday, March 3, 2013

Introduction to 3D printing technology


(Direct link to YouTube video) This fast-paced video anticipates the various ways that the new technology of 3D printing will influence our artistic and practical lives.
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From the PBS OffBook series about art and internet culture
Via BoingBoing

8 comments:

Novice Naturalist said...

Thank you! The discussion of 3D printing possibilities for organic structures came up recently in my college classroom--in an English comp class of all places. We were discussing moral implications of emerging technology, and I mentioned the possibility of printing organs for medical applications. The students were fascinated, but since I had read only a little on the topic, I couldn't offer much concrete help. Can't wait till they get back from semester break to share this video with them!

Terry said...

Yes, it's a wonderful new world, 3D printing, yes medically, artistically, design-wise, environmentally...oh, wait. All that plastic? No one is talking about how plastic is a scourge upon the Earth? No one is talking about potential volatile organic compounds or carcinogens wafting through the air of your workshop or kitchen or playroom? How about millions of homes getting their own 3D printers and churning out even more plastic junk than is already plaguing the environment?

I am sorry to sound like such a crank, because 3D printing is fascinating and fun and full of potential - but the mindless use of plastics really bothers me, not just in 3D printing, but everywhere.

Murat Kayi said...

Thanks Terry, I was about to post the same comment. Before enthusiastically diving head-first into yet another source for more plastic products in our lives I was really curious to hear about the actual material used in these printers... But not a word on sustainability or the likes...

James Gurney said...

I'm glad you raised the question about the materials, and it's too bad the video producers didn't include a segment on that. From what I've gathered, 3D printing uses a lot of different processes and materials, including thermoplastics, resins, metal alloys, and even paper and plaster. I don't know what the environmental implications are.

Craig Banholzer said...

"Everything is made just for you...." In other words, it's the return of hand craftsmanship, without the hands!

vlad74 said...

Right on the spot Terry.

Murat Kayi said...

On the other hand I found this little project study: 3D printing from solar light and desert sand!
http://www.lilligreen.de/markus-kayser-solar-3d-drucker/

Reaven said...

@Terry
I imagine when home 3D printing takes off, home filament extruders will also take off. Where you could take recyclable plastic (like water bottles), put it in the filament maker and it will melt it down into more filament - or take a failed or obsolete 3D printed objects and do the same.

Such as :
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/rocknail/filabot-plastic-filament-maker

I could also see using biodegradable plastics - although I don't know if that's currently feasible.