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October 27, 2011 AT 12:00 am

Mass Production for the Masses

Pt 101829

Mass Production for the Masses: Shapeways CEO Peter Weijmarshausen on the Rise of Personal Manufacturing @ Forbes.

What’s happening with the democratization of production is game changing. With this at your fingertips, the world is a different place. Having access to this kind of technology will change the way products are consumed and developed. Think of the fact that you can mix materials on an almost molecular level. Next, you’ll be able to create new materials that we’ve never had before. You can mix strong and soft materials. You can engineer how a product will break if you put too much stress on it. Mix electronics into it, and we’ll see things you can’t even imagine now. Look at the Shapeways products in my office—you could make them all in traditional ways. But the next level will be things that are exclusively producible through new technology. With 3D printing you can get feedback and improve design after producing just one object. Your minimum run is one. So products can evolve much quicker. Mix this with the opening up of design—what open-source did for software, 3D printing can do for product design. I don’t know what we’re going to create, but it will be amazing.


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