It seems like there’s a new report on the advancements of 3-D printing every day. Considering how 3-D printing is shaping up to be the next technology to dramatically and fundamentally alter our lives,the rapid stream of news coming from the field isn’t surprising.
With the printers themselves becoming more compact and more affordable (at $3,300 a pop now, don’t forget the first VCR’s were upwards of $5,000) it’s conceivable that models marketed for personal home use aren’t too far away. But that raises the question of what three dimensional products consumers will be printing.
While there will surely be countless plans available for free download, there’s simply no chance retailers won’t jump at the opportunity to sell you licensed products of their own. It isn’t hard to imagine designs for cell phone covers, laptop cases, kitchen utensils, jewelry, and toys being just a fraction of possible items that will become available.
Of all the musing I’ve done on the near limitless possibilities 3-D printing represents, it actually never occurred to me that plans for a fully articulated robot would be amongst them. The ramifications are mind boggling. As the field of robotics advances this might not be too far-fetched a thing to become a commonplace marketable product.