HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Blogs
Engineering Materials
Slideshow: 3D-Print, Etch & Mill in 1 Machine
9/12/2013

Image 1 of 8      Next >

The latest in Kickstarter's clever, ingenious, and useful manufacturing products is the Microfactory, which combines 3D printing, milling, and etching in one system.(Source: Mebotics)
The latest in Kickstarter's clever, ingenious, and useful manufacturing products is the Microfactory, which combines 3D printing, milling, and etching in one system.
(Source: Mebotics)

Image 1 of 8      Next >

Return to Article

View Comments: Newest First|Oldest First|Threaded View
Greg M. Jung
User Rank
Platinum
Small Businesses
Greg M. Jung   9/28/2013 11:33:15 PM
NO RATINGS
Great idea and happy to read about this type of product.  I can see this opening the doors for many small business owners who want to create a little extra income by making parts for larger suppliers.  Since this has a reasonable initial investment cost, this type of technology trend could help stimulate the growth of small busineses.

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Prototyping gadget
Ann R. Thryft   9/24/2013 11:41:34 AM
NO RATINGS
I think you're right about patents, Rob. This reminds me of some of the early days of desktop publishing and of the web itself. The intellectual property issues are potentially equally huge.



Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Prototyping gadget
Rob Spiegel   9/20/2013 1:27:53 PM
NO RATINGS
Good point about patents. I don't see this problem sorting itself out soon. For one thing, patents matter -- as evidenced by the patent wars in smart phone and tablet technology. And you can't limit the patents to significant technology because it's had to tell what technology will end up significant.

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Prototyping gadget
Ann R. Thryft   9/13/2013 12:31:39 PM
NO RATINGS
Glad to see all this enthusiasm. And it's too bad about the patent office--I agree with Lou. Way too many trivial patents, and even more copies of basically the same idea. That's at least one reason why so many innovative people are going to online platforms like Kickstarter.



TJ McDermott
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Prototyping gadget
TJ McDermott   9/13/2013 11:53:50 AM
NO RATINGS
Another machine we could call a Fabber.  I want one, I want one!  My employer's not going to pony up for one on my desk though, and I don't think my wife's going to be pleased if I swing it myself.

I think you're correct about the patent office and Naperlou nailed the reason on the head - the insignificant patents issued is choking the system.

naperlou
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Prototyping gadget
naperlou   9/13/2013 9:18:26 AM
NO RATINGS
Rob, you might have a point about the patent office.  Big companies, like GE. generate thousands of patents each year.  I doubt that anyone internally really understands how to use most of them.  In addition, have you ever noticed all of the insignificant products that are patented?  This should tell one something.  The pace of innovation is fast becuase of the availability of information and the "sunk cost" in the innovations that came before.  This won't slow down.

Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Prototyping gadget
Charles Murray   9/12/2013 5:30:54 PM
NO RATINGS
I think you're part of a big club, Rob. At the Medical Design & Manufacturing Show this week, rapid prototyping and 3D printing were the talk of the show and those booths attracted large crowds.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Prototyping gadget
Rob Spiegel   9/12/2013 11:14:58 AM
NO RATINGS
I love this all-in-one prototyping machine -- an inventive machine for inventive people. Man, new inventions are coming so quickly, we should close the Patent Office.

Partner Zone
More Blogs from Engineering Materials
Although plastics make up only about 11% of all US municipal solid waste, many are actually more energy-dense than coal. Converting these non-recycled plastics into energy with existing technologies could reduce US coal consumption, as well as boost domestic energy reserves, says a new study.
This year's Dupont-sponsored WardsAuto survey of automotive designers and other engineers shows lightweighting dominates the discussion. But which materials will help them meet the 2025 CAFE standards are not entirely clear.
Artificially created metamaterials are already appearing in niche applications like electronics, communications, and defense, says a new report from Lux Research. How quickly they become mainstream depends on cost-effective manufacturing methods, which will include additive manufacturing.
SpaceX has 3D printed and successfully hot-fired a SuperDraco engine chamber made of Inconel, a high-performance superalloy, using direct metal laser sintering (DMLS). The company's first 3D-printed rocket engine part, a main oxidizer valve body for the Falcon 9 rocket, launched in January and is now qualified on all Falcon 9 flights.
A new thermoplastic composite for high-speed, high-volume injection molding has tensile strength that's close to, and sometimes better than, either lay-up composites or metals.
Design News Webinar Series
7/23/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
7/17/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
6/25/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
5/13/2014 10:00 a.m. California / 1:00 p.m. New York / 6:00 p.m. London
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Sep 8 - 12, Get Ready for the New Internet: IPv6
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Next Class: September 30 - October 2
Sponsored by Altera
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service