- The advent of 3D printers has ushered in a new era of personal manufacturing. Makerbot, based in Brooklyn, NYC is making waves with its Replicator bots.
- A couple of my colleagues are hooked. It gives an individual a sense of total control. One can start with a napkin design, move to a computer model, interface the model to the Replicator and voila get a working prototype in minutes.
- The science behind these printers is that of additive manufacturing. Which basically means building out objects layer by layer.
- The other movement is that of Arduino, the open-source single-board microcontroller. Founders Massimo Banzi and David Cuartielles named the project after Arduin of Ivrea, the main historical character of the town.
- This is an excellent initiative to encourage design junkies to use electronics and make utility hacks to everyday products. I decided to give it a go and made a color changing night light.
- This new wave of manufacturing (making) is personalizing an age old process and challenging the volume myths associated with manufacturing. It will be interesting to see how this space unfolds.
- I had never heard the word ‘Auxetic’ before. Materials that are auxetic expand on the application of force. The opposite of the well documented Hooke’s law.
- This could be used in applications ranging from filtration, the military, and band-aids. I’ll leave it here for you to ponder about these examples.
- Healthcare, Cars, and Agriculture. Three sectors which will be swept by a wave of automation. For better or worse, time will tell. I am a tech optimist and strongly feel it will be for the better.
- Google has obtained licenses for operating driver-less cars in Colorado, Nevada, and Florida. Vinod Khosla is bullish on automating 80% of every physician’s work. He is also investing in Lettuce Bots which help farmers in California get better at producing the 70% national share of lettuce the state accounts for.
- Will these automated systems be good enough or better than humans? What are the cost implications? How about legal stuff? I’ll be watching this space closely. You should too.