Tuesday, May 08, 2007


The items pictured here look like nothing special, until you find out that they were "printed" from a machine we may all have in our own homes soon. Yesterday's New York Times explained these amazing "printers" in their article "Beam It Down From the Web, Scotty."

I'm often astounded by the imaginations of others, especially in the technology sector. If it were left to people like me, we'd still be spending large portions of our days churning butter or (gasp!) writing letters by hand...then sending them through Pony Express. So I'm astonished because a machine like this would literally never occur to me.

In the article, they also mentioned implications for design. As I was reading this section, my friend asked if I wanted to make a bet on how long it would take before we had one of these printers in our school. His bet was five years, since by that time they will only cost about $1,000. I was still trying to wrap my mind around the printer itself.

I teach graphic design now. I'm wondering if I should start taking some classes so that five years down the line, I will be able to teach this 3-Dimensional design to my middle school students.

And maybe, if things keep going as they are, we will get to the point where we have the one type of technology I have dreamed of. I can see myself now, going to a contraption installed in my wall, ordering a cheeseburger or a banana split or chicken parmesan and having it available in mere seconds...

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