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When you see the different ways that 3D printing technology is growing, many people point to how the technology will be increasingly used by consumers who want to design and/or purchase 3D printed objects. And considering how the craze for selfies doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, we will also see a rise in the number of services offering 3D scanning and printing. Take as an example of just such a service, New York City’s The Pixel Academysha5. Next week, Pixel Academy will offer free 3D scanning at two of its three spaces, one in Manhattan, and one in Brooklyn. This service is in partnership with Shapeways to help get you on the path to celebrating your holiday season, and to teach the public a little more about 3D scanning and printing.

Shapeways has already offered the same free 3D scanning service in ten locations in The Netherlands. Of course, the idea is to get 3D scanned customers to purchase a 3D printed selfie from Shapeways, too. (Eventually it will take less than a minute to fully scan a person: at the Shapeways’ Eindhoven factory a massive walk-in scanner is being built that will be able to scan people in 0.1 seconds!)

If you are interested in 3D scanning and printing, and happen to be lucky enough to live in New York City, then you’ll definitely want to check out Pixel Academy. Aimed at introducing young people, ages 4-16, to some of the cutting-edge technologies that aren’t covered in school, Pixel Academy has after school pick-up and programs, full-day and weekend-long camps, and it even hosts technology-themed birthday parties.

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But, before you convince your parents to let you have a technology-themed birthday party, it may be a good idea to take them out after your holiday meal and get scanned together! Pixel Academy will use Skanect (made by Shapeways’ partner Occipital), which is really easy to use software. You just need to be able to stand still for 1-2 minutes while being scanned, which won’t be hard for some people considering they may be full from eating too much turkey!

The other thing to keep in mind here is that if you order your 3D printed selfie from Shapeways, you will be able to give it to a loved one as a holiday gift. You can also schedule a scanning appointment if you’d prefer not to wait in line, by going here. And more times are being offered after next week’s holiday. You can find out more about that schedule here. What could be easier?

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Like I hinted earlier, if you are a crafty youth reading about this service and are trying to figure out how to get your parents on board with all of this new technology, this may be the perfect, pain-free way for them to start.  3D printed selfies for all, and to all a goodnight!  Discuss this story in the Shapeways / The Pixel Academy Forum thread on 3DPB.com.

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