We covered a story recently reporting on the advent of 3D printing services being offered free at hundreds of libraries around the country, from public libraries to secondary school libraries and those at universities. It’s a win-win not only for validating the incredible uses and inspiration afforded by 3D printing, but it puts the resources right into the hands of people who benefit the most: those who want to pull up their shirtsleeves and learn.
With the glow and novelty of computers and the internet being taken much for granted these days, libraries are also experiencing a boon as they are able to house new technologies and jazz up their schedules with presentations and classes, and watch enthusiastic 3D printing hobbyists at all levels line up to use the valuable machinery.
Accentuating that rebirth of the library is a program soon to be offering free 3D printing classes at the Brooklyn Public Library with Ultimaker and 3DPrinterOS. This is also an excellent way to bring in structured programs with experts on hand and get enthusiasm brewing in the community. Meant to answer the basic questions about what the technology is and what it can do—and how to get from point A to B–library patrons and those interested receive the following:
- Basic introduction to how a 3D printer works
- Discussion of realistic uses for 3D printed models and prototypes
- Discussion of filaments and materials, as well as the variety of alternative ones, like chocolate, sand, metal
- Education on varying 3D printing technology, history, and definitions
- One-on-one training
- Free access to 3DPrinterOS’ 3D printing cloud operating system
- A chance to 3D print a model, including the use of alternative, sophisticated materials
The class revolves around the ideals of all involved, as the libraries want to encourage learning, creativity, and inspiration—and are emphasizing the importance of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education. Ultimaker is known for their open source concept and for encouraging folks at every level to get involved in the 3D printing revolution. The award-winning company works to share their knowledge, exhibiting dedication and commitment to community.
Winner of the Positive Change award at the 2014 3D Printshow Global Awards, 3DPrinterOS is actually responsible for teaching the class. Not only are they receiving support and collaboration from the library but also from Shapeways and Foxsmart Filament. Learning about their cloud-based system that supports almost all of desktop 3D printers is a part of the class.
“We’ve seen tremendous interest in these classes in the past few months in New York, people want to learn about 3D printing and ask questions about how this technology could change their lives,” said 3DPrinterOS CEO John Dogru. “Collaborating with Ultimaker for these classes gives our audience the ability to see 3D printing in action on some of the best machines in the world.”
It’s hoped that soon the classes can also be offered online, and 3DPrinterOS is working to make that happen.
What do you think about the public library being used as a venue for offering technology classes? Is this class one you’d like to participate in? Tell us your thoughts in the Free 3D Printing Classes at Brooklyn Public Library forum over at 3DPB.com.