Editorials / Opinions

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Buying the Death Star: Ultimaker Merges with MakerBot. Takes Stratasys Investment

When I used to work at Ultimaker, Makerbot was the enemy. They were closed, corporate, didn’t care about customers and didn’t care about values and open hardware. We did everything…

Where is 3D Printing in Gartner’s Hype Cycle?

Gartner´s Hype Cycle outlines five distinct phases of a technology’s lifecycle. We start with the Innovation Trigger, in which media initiates the spread of a technology. Subsequent success stories fuel…

Combatting Planned Obsolescence with 3D Printing: Who Owns Your Things?

John Deere is suing customers, claiming that they cannot be allowed to repair the tractors that they bought. Monsanto (now Bayer) has deemed that it is okay to buy seeds…

A Bioprinting Proposal: A Human Vascularization Project

The Human Genome Project lasted from 1990 to 2003 and resulted in the cost-effective mapping of human DNA. Several countries, companies, and dozens of research centers worldwide cooperated and competed…

Let’s Kill Disney: A 3D Printing Patent Dispute and a Manifesto

Previously we looked at if we should kill Thingiverse. Thingiverse is a site that allows you to upload and remix files. It’s a key piece of infrastructure for a 3D…

Russia, China, Europe, the US and the Rest: 3D Printing a Fractious World

If we consider geopolitics as a game of individuals, we might perceive the following: One madman contemplates his own mortality and as he withers in the mirror, he wishes to…

Business Development: Polymer 3D Printed Jewellery

We spend so much of our time seeking the right parts, developing new materials, finding new applications that I fear we may have lost the plot. Yes, our future is…

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Future of AM: 3D Printing Experts Talk Mass Production Issues

What is the future of 3D printing? Away from the hype and Wall Street, what are we actually going to be able to do? What are the challenges in additive…

Business Development: The Worst Idea in 3D Printing Ever

One application that changed my view of 3D printing forever was Hans Boodt’s 3D printing of mannequins. The Dutch firm is a leader in high-end displays. I was flabbergasted when…

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Amid Russian Invasion of Ukraine, EOS Issues 3D Printing Boycott

As of last week, it’s become nearly impossible to talk about anything but the Russian invasion of Ukraine. In response to the possible inclusion of Russia’s neighbor into NATO, an…

Greenwashing: 3D Printing’s New “Dirty Little Secret”

A few years ago, as we moved along the Hype Cycle after having dipped into the Trough of Disillusionment, things were looking up again for 3D printing. This time there…

Design for Disruption: 3D Printing Short Runs and Distributed Production

Previously in this series, we’ve looked at designing for resilience and the concept of an industrial aftermarket for all things and 3D printed spares, as well as designing for installation, maintenance,…

Design for Disruption: Love and 3D Printing Redundancy

In this ongoing series, we’re looking for opportunities where 3D printing can disrupt large markets with millions of parts by applying new strategies. We’ve looked at how we can design…

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Why Local Motors Failed: The Local 3D Printing Factory Myth

For close to two decades now, there has been hype about the idea of local factories. These facilities would quickly be able to make local goods, which could conform to…

3D Printing Drone Swarms, Part 12: 3D Printing Missiles

As we discuss in our ongoing 3D Printing Drone Swarms series, additive manufacturing (AM) will play an increasing role in the production of all manner of semi-sentient robots. This has been…

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Big and Tall Metal 3D Printer Heralds Rocket Future for China’s EPlus 3D

Until recently, Chinese 3D printer manufacturers either stuck to selling in China, made inexpensive 3D printers, made copies of Western printers, or did some combination of all of the above….

3D Printing Drone Swarms, Pt 11: AI-Powered Boats

As we discuss in our ongoing 3D Printing Drone Swarms series, additive manufacturing (AM) will play an increasing role in the production of all manner of semi-sentient robots. This has been…

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Apple 3D Printing: Is It Possible to 3D Print an iPhone?

Tech news sites like to regularly report on Apple’s latest patent filings, especially when this comes to such unique technologies as 3D printing. But how feasible is it that a…

Whose 3D Printing Platform Is It Anyway?

I’m bombarded daily by so many people building “ecosystems”, I think I’m living in a dog’s mouth or the Amazon river basin, so teeming with life is our 3D printing…

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Bosch’s Ceramics 3D Printing Unit & the Future of AM

Bosch is an absolutely huge company that makes batteries, drills, e-bike motors, vacuums, powertrain components, infotainment systems, lawnmowers, MEMS sensors, air conditioning systems, security cameras and much more. The multinational…

3D Printing Trade Show Best Practices: Food and Food for Thought

This is the third installment of ideas, suggestions, and best practices for your 3D printing stand from an interested observer. We previously discussed booth location and how best to connect…

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How to Buy the Best 3D Printer for Kids This Holiday Season

It’s that time of year again, which means that someone will ask me what 3D printer they should get their kids for Christmas. The answer I always give is, of…

3D Printing Trade Show Best Practices: Stand Design and Location

As an interested party but by no means an expert on organizing stands at 3D printing trade shows, I’ve made a round-up, sharing ideas and best practices for your next…

Design for Disruption: 3D Printing for the Industrial Aftermarket

Previously, we’ve discussed how maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO), as well as spare parts business cases are potentially great ways to disrupt existing businesses. But, we can go further than…