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MakerBot Day 4: It Takes a World to Make a MakerBot

You may have noticed that, four posts into this series exploring life with a MakerBot, I've yet to actually print anything with my Thing-O-Matic. To make a long story short, despite my best efforts to resolve the problem on my own - which primarily consisted of testing the connections between the Arduino MEGA and the TOM's motherboard (the combined brain of the bot, these are responsible for processing the 3D model input and issuing commands to the other electronics in the bot), it turned out that the problem was beyond my capacity to fix.

Manufacturing: Do It Yourself?

3D printers have lead to rapid prototyping and a made a significant impact on product design. However, rapid prototyping is now morphing into rapid, high-end manufacturing such as hearing-aid production. Early versions of machines that can fabricate electronics and displays alongside mechanical structures will be more widely available by the end of the decade.

3D Print-On-Demand

Whenever the topic of low-cost 3D fabrication comes up, one inevitable question (after "how expensive is a printer?") is "does anyone do print-on-demand fabbing?" 3D print-on-demand services have been around for awhile, but they're largely aimed at design pros with healthy bank accounts.

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