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Beth Stackpole
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Blogger
Re: A great Christmas present
Beth Stackpole   8/22/2011 7:05:12 AM
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I think you're right, jmiller. In the next couple of years, it will be up there on the list just like iPods, tablets, and smart phones, which were unthinkable gifts for kids a mere five years ago. And while a great gift for the those self-defined engineers-to-be, 3D printers packaged up with easy-to-use content creation tools or services will help unearth the hidden engineer in many of those kids for whom the profession never was on the map in the first place.

jmiller
User Rank
Platinum
A great Christmas present
jmiller   8/21/2011 8:34:14 PM
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How far are we from a little Christmas present for our young'uns where they can build their own robot and then have it sent home for a reasonable price.  Kind of a cool idea for any teenager with an interest in engineering, designing and assembling things.  Great article.

jmiller
User Rank
Platinum
A great Christmas present
jmiller   8/21/2011 8:34:13 PM
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How far are we from a little Christmas present for our young'uns where they can build their own robot and then have it sent home for a reasonable price.  Kind of a cool idea for any teenager with an interest in engineering, designing and assembling things.  Great article.

johngaltrules
User Rank
Bronze
Re: my robot nation
johngaltrules   8/20/2011 1:40:40 PM
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The technology of rapid prototyping is going to take over manufacturing as rapid prototyping becomes reality.  I love the Robot Nation concept

Beth Stackpole
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Blogger
Re: my robot nation
Beth Stackpole   8/20/2011 8:40:33 AM
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Thanks for the link, John. I've seen a bunch of teachers interviewed lately taking about how they're leveraging 3D printing services and capabilities in the classroom. Great opportunity for the kids--problem is who is going to pay for it with today's depleted budgets.

johnahladis
User Rank
Iron
Re: my robot nation
johnahladis   8/18/2011 5:10:50 PM
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Schools and educators are very interested in 3D printing technology to help boost their students' knowledge and to be able to create 3D models at school, rather than having to order them. One product schools are very inteterested in is 2BOT's ModelMaker. 2BOT even has a website with models connected to lesson plans for teachers to use in class.

http://www.modelmakernation.com

Beth Stackpole
User Rank
Blogger
Re: my robot nation
Beth Stackpole   8/18/2011 3:41:25 PM
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Toy of the century--you both may be on to something. But I agree with Sensor Pro that the price point has to come down even further, likely to the sub-$1,000 range, before people will consider 3D printers as yet another must-have piece of electronics equipment for the home.

Schools also seem to be highly interested in the 3D print revolution, seeing the technology as a way to help students bring their ideas and studies to life. The more the younger generation gets used to this kind of technology, the more comfortable they become and the more likely they are to wield it in the engineering jobs of the future.

Ann Marie Shillito
User Rank
Iron
Re: My Robot Nation
Ann Marie Shillito   8/18/2011 2:50:47 PM
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Charles, I so agree that this application in itself, coupled with 3D printing, could be the toy of the century. It can be already with 3D printing accessed through services such as Shapeways, Ponoko, i.materialise, Sculpteo to name but a few. They have made access to 3D printing pain free. I think that the important nub of this article is that My Robot Nation is software application that will enable anyone to 3D model their robot. CAD is the barrier for the vast majority for creating the model to print. I look forward to seeing the scope My Robot Nation offers for modelling. We definitely need the range of software applications and usability to cover all types of creativity. Anarkik3D's haptic Cloud9 product also fits into the space that the article has focused on as it enables a different group, makers and artists, ranging from professionals to amateurs and hobbyists, to 3D model and get printing! This video we made covers this beautifully  http://vimeo.com/27626576
Its great to see collaborations such as this between My Robot Nation and ZCorp flagged up, which knock down barrier to 3D printing and give access to non CAD users.

Charles Murray
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Blogger
My Robot Nation
Charles Murray   8/18/2011 12:21:59 PM
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Great article. I know countless engineers who need this technology for prototyping of parts, but I can also imagine it being a hit in homes if the cost drops a little bit more. This, in itself, could be the toy of the century.

sensor pro
User Rank
Gold
my robon nation
sensor pro   8/18/2011 12:17:47 PM
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You are 100% correct. I think the price level should be in couple of $100s. Personaly I go through 1-2 printers/year, as it is not cost smart to fix them. I just replace them. For the 3D ones, clearly you need to pay premium, but it is still too high.

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