Where it all begins...My 3D printing Adventure starts here...
Out of the box.
Well, not so fast.
I began this journey a few years ago when 3D printing became more than an embryonic idea, to be adopted by the most needing and well-financed of teams. Which didn’t include me.
That did include architects, government entities, deep-pocketed cutting-edge-minded people like me, but with a lot more money and time, and many academics, engineers, developers, and people with bigger brains than mine.
I’m patient. So I’ve been drooling all over the 3D assemblies that have been coming to market, with big price tags, and even had the joy to play with some in previous professional capacities.
And I’ve watched the prices come down, the communities swell around the software, hardware and build hubs where like-minded people can exchange ideas, experiences, files, work, failures, and successes, and grow the whole thing.
Identifiable and legitimate leaders have emerged, in every space: the designers, engineers, makers, software and hardware pros, companies that cater to them, and personalities that also come with space.
It’s matured to a level that I now can dive into the pool myself. I could have bought a printer a few years ago, but I didn’t have space, or capacity to use it as intended. No real purpose, other than playing around, which is how a lot of technology grows legs. By emerging via toys and tinkering by people with the smarts, money, and time to devote to helping grow the entire concept.
Sometimes it’s then that someone picks up the ball and really runs with it, as Elon Musk did with EVs and battery-powered cars. He has the money, brains, connections, and wherewithal to make a dream a much-needed reality. And had been rewarded for it rightfully. It’s that type of vision and timing that allows us as humans to project ourselves into the future.
3D printing is getting there as well. With printing 3D human organs, and concepts that are beginning to come online. Someone is going to come along soon like Elon did and take it. to the next level at the right time and with the resources needed.
Until then, this is when I’m jumping in. I didn’t have the $100,000 to play in the EV game when it took off and still don’t.
But this is an entirely different playing field and concept and tool and everything. This is a tool that brings an ability to the masses just like GPS brought space/time/location services to the masses. I remember buying my first GPS way back when and sitting in my car, outside Best Buy in Charlotte, NC, thinking, “this thing is going to change the way humans operate and interact and are able to function.” And I was right.
It’s not hard to peg such technological marvels. To me, at least. I spotted it with Netflix when they went [public and saw the only thing holding them back was broadband speeds and availability. That problem has since been quickly solved as I knew it would be. There was too much potential holding it back not to be.
That doesn’t make me a genius or anything, but I’m able to spot when and what is going to be the next big things pretty easily. Which is fun to be able to do.
I believe 3D printing will be another space to be relatively quickly adopted, iterated upon, commoditized, and made useful for all humanity to live better with.
And I’m learning that skill and technology now. If you want to join me in my endeavor, follow along!