About "the last printer": there's another factor to consider. I do a lot of photography (grandchildren!) and some years ago (when I switched to digital exclusively, and bought a DSLR) I needed a really good photo-quality printer to replace my venerable HP855 (which died completely soon after). Since I also needed to do some larger-format printing, I chose a mid-high end Canon i9900 ink jet for about $400, as I couldn't afford the "best" design, dye-sub. It has served my purposes admirably, but it's quite expensive to feed: 8 ink cartridges, currently costing me more than $10.00 each (in a multi-pack, on-line). And, they don't print many high-res images (maybe a handful of 13x19 inch) before severeal need replacing. I did try "private-label" cartridges just ONCE; saved a couple of bucks but ended up having to buy a new $85 print head! Here's the REAL kicker: there are only a couple of sellers who even stock the full multi-packs or the two "unique" photo cartridges used only by this printer and one of its siblings. NONE of the many office supply chains stock these anymore and only a couple allow ordering, so I suppose it's only a matter of time before they are completely discontinued. Then this fine tool will become a museum piece, eventually finding its way to a recycling center, and I'll have to find a suitable replacement. This is a bit worse than "planned obsolescence," more like "forced obsolescence."
Baking your board--now that's a new concept, but apparently an effective one so thanks for bringing it to the Design News community's attention.
One comment you made that struck me--that the $500 printer would likely be your last printer purchase ever. I don't think any one can say that about any product these days, particularly home office printers. These units appear to be so flimsy and designed for a very short shelf life. What have I heard folks talk about in this community--designing for planned obsolescence. I'd say this is a perfect example.
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A quick look into the merger of two powerhouse 3D printing OEMs and the new leader in rapid prototyping solutions, Stratasys. The industrial revolution is now led by 3D printing and engineers are given the opportunity to fully maximize their design capabilities, reduce their time-to-market and functionally test prototypes cheaper, faster and easier. Bruce Bradshaw, Director of Marketing in North America, will explore the large product offering and variety of materials that will help CAD designers articulate their product design with actual, physical prototypes. This broadcast will dive deep into technical information including application specific stories from real world customers and their experiences with 3D printing. 3D Printing is