Tom Burtonwood: 3Dx2013 Year In Review #AdafruitTopTen #3DThursday #3DPrinting #3DScanning #3D

We reached out to a handful of 3D printing pioneers and designers featured on the Adafruit blog this past year for their thoughts on the year-in-review — and what we have to look forward to for 3D printing in 2014!

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A handy introduction to the artist Tom Burtonwood:

As the sampler was to hip-hop so the 3D printer is to sculpture and designed objects. Open source 3D printing has paved the way for a revolution in making things. Desktop digital fabrication is bringing the cost of failure down by speeding up the prototyping process and collapsing the distance between idea and product, problem and solution, designer and end user. The outcome of this revolution is a sea change in the relationship between the engineer and their audience. 3D printing and scanning combined are time machines. They reach back into the past and teleport objects of antiquity around the globe, reproducing and sharing them for everyone to touch and hold in their hands. Just as blogs disrupted publishing, and smart phones changed communications so 3D printing, scanning and modeling will transform the world of objects and the services that surround them.

Q: Top three printing moments from 2013?

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1. Wally and Simpson:

Love these RepRap variants – looking forward to making one in the New Year.

2. 3D Printer Test Kit Graphica:

i’m a big fan of all things 3D Kitbash – i backed the Graphica Kickstarter earlier in 2013. In addition to being great calibration tests they are very popular for demonstrations and as teaching tools.

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3. Pocket Tactics / dutchmogul:

Big big fan of this project – although i will admit to having not actually printed any of them. but as a table top gamer many many moons ago i totally get this project and similar projects out there.

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4. Robohand

For me this answers the perennial question of “Yes, but, what is it good for?” – hands down – no pun intended.

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5. 4×5 pinhole camera:

3D printing has the potential to open up and democratize all kinds of tools, objects and devices. some will work better than others. this project by schlem seems like a perfect marriage of the old and the new, pushing the tech to it’s limits but also creating something with a broad end user base and opening up an expensive bit of kit to a much wider audience.

Q: What’s a project you shared this year?


This has been my most important 3D printed project to date.

Q: What are you most looking forward to for 3D Printing in 2014?

From a personal point of view i’m starting an Artist-In-Residence at The Art Institute of Chicago in late January thru the end of June.

But on a wider note more 3DP materials, a wider adoption of 3DP into mainstream, crazy new RepRap variants and new open sourced hardware with the new round of expiring patents.

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