Re: [rp-ml] Desktop Factory

From: steve <>
Date: Thu Aug 31 2006 - 01:35:49 EEST

Brock Hinzmann wrote:
> I think Charles gets to the heart of the matter, in terms of who the
> consumer will be. The Home Office-plus-Kinko's model make the most sense
> to me. Most people just won't make enough use to have one in every home.
> In the RepRap model, however, if you spread the use across a global
> community of 6 billion people, you can probably sell (or make available)
> a lot of machines to small communities of consumers, who will channel
> networks of users. I'm less worried about the data and what people will
> print than Charles is. Just look around at digital photography and
> online video sites. 99 percent will be 3-D Crap. But it will be
> personal. I tried to anticipate some of these issues in a piece titled
> The Personal Factory, which was posted on several web sites (Wohlers,
> Ennex, et al) a decade ago. Is it finally going to happen?

Places like are a natural for 'RepCrap' (I think
I need to trade-mark that term!) - and perhaps people will pay money
for things that are actually hard to design for some reason.

The Kinko's model makes sense initially (as it did with colour printing
and laser printers when they cost $5000 a pop) - but people will get
more savvy about 3D printing and the demand for small home/office
machines will grow.

There really isn't much that makes a 3D printer more expensive than a
2D one. The 3D printer needs a couple of extra motors - but the
precision demands are similar and both have to squirt liquids around
at high temperatures and such. It will be possible to make $500 3D
printers and at that point, anyone who has a need for one can have

But I agree that we probably need a year or two at the "Kinko's"
phase before we can get to that stage.
Received on Thu Aug 31 00:18:57 2006

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