I look forward to the maturation of 3D scanning. I hope it becomes accessible, like 3D printing, to the masses. I'm sure we will see countless bootlegging of products, but that the way the world works. It may force companies to create better products, beyond the quality of household printing.
I foresee someone taking the 3D scanned caves and building the places into their homes. Imagine if part of our homes were an accurate recreation of Werner Herzog's "Cave of Forgotten Dreams."
That was one of my favorite Herzog movies, and one of the few I've ever wanted to see in 3D (although we didn't get to). He is an odd duck, but definitely a genius--who else would have thought to make that movie? Having part of Altamira, Lascaux or Chauvet in one's living room would be an amazing experience.
Herzog is definitely a nut, but a creative, innovative one. I'd forgotten the crack about crocodiles--that was weird. If you mean the D-Shape 3D printer or others of its type, like I wrote about in a recent Future Cities blog http://www.ubmfuturecities.com/author.asp?section_id=262&doc_id=523906 they don't actually print stone, but some of its constituent materials: e.g., sand, gravel, or clay, using a binder. But that said, whatever came out of it would look like the real thing.
The D-Shape is definitely art-oriented, and also architecture oriented. If you look at the stuff the inventor has done with it, like fancy, swirly shaped architectural elements, I think it would be the perfect candidate for our cave art wall.
I wonder if there will be some fuss made about the ability to copy things without having to design them. Right now we have all kinds of inconveniences and limitations because of the crybabies. We have digital rights management code deciding if we can make a copy to keep in the car, or transfer to a different media, or make our own collection of music. Likewise with DVDs. And you just can't play a CD from other parts of the world, no matter how legal it is.
So just imagine the howels when somebody produces a copy of some overpriced item. We will have an interesting situation indeed. Imagine a "duplicate" Rolex watch, if you will. Of course, the quality may be really hard to copy, but not the image and appearance. At least that is how it looks to me. And just imagine what it would be like if somebody could copy some of the more serious military weapons. Grab one and scan it and then print out and asemble dozens.
So digital bootleging may inspire some sort of regulations, but I can't imagine how they would work.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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