Open Source News

Open Source 3-D Printer

Ages ago I heard about these 3-D printers – printers that allow you create physical objects (usually in plastic) at home. While cool, they seemed way out of my reach price-wise. Now I see that the printer has finally gone below $1000!! I now that’s still expensive, but it means that the price is coming down to where the average person can afford one. Even better – this one is open source – and has a community around it that are sharing designs that can be ‘printed’ using this printer. Check out this video for more:

Wired.com checks out MakerBot’s Cupcake CNC 3-D Printer. Using PLA, ABS, or HDPE plastic, this open source, $950 kit allows the user to fabricate small objects of virtually any shape.

You might be wondering what the practical purpose would be for something like this – I mean do you really need to create your own mini busts of people? But think about the potential here – if a small piece breaks off of your favorite object you can go to the company website download the specs for the piece and have the printer create a new piece for you without having to wait for the producer to mail you the piece!! This is great for older items in your house that are no longer supported through official outlets.

Anyway, maybe not necessary in the library world, but still pretty darn cool – and open source – which is why I’m talking about it here.

Read more by Nicole C.

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