Editor-in-chief at WIRED, Chris Anderson covered the rise of desktop 3D printing from its earliest days, and his MAKERS book represents a significant synthesis of thoughts he had about the direction of things up to the point at which he departed WIRED to dive into the open hardware scene with both feet.
Significant in here for 3D designers are his thoughts about these tools within the greater context of maker tools. What makers can gain from using 3D printing as the production process for certain elements but not others, for the projects they are inventing and sharing with the world.
MAKERS is something of a snapshot his opinions about these topics from up to the summer of 2012, and a lot has changed since then. (And I have my own thoughts on the early days of MakerBot having been there.) So I have continued to catch posts and talks from Anderson to keep up with his evolving analysis of the changing landscape for makers + 3D printers. (I have included his Open Hardware Summit keynote from 2012 which I found a particularly helpful strong business argument for keeping projects open.)
In Makers, Wired editor and bestselling author Chris Anderson reveals that a new industrial revolution is under way. Today’s entrepreneurs, using open-source design and 3-D printing, are employing micro-manufacturing techniques to create a tsunami of products in small batches, often customized for specific customers at higher margins.
Every country, to remain economically strong, must make physical products if it doesn’t want to become a nation of burger flippers and checkout clerks. Yet in America and Europe, it has become harder and harder to sustain manufacturing as entire industries, from clothing to electronics, have shifted their factories to Asia and other low-cost regions. In the United States, manufacturing employment as a percentage of total working population is at a century-long low.
The solution, Anderson says, is in a desktop manufacturing revolution that will change the world as much as the personal computer did. The tools of factory production, from digital fabrication to online factory services, are now available to everyone; garage start-ups can make products in batches as small as a single unit or as large as tens of thousands. Anyone with an idea can set assembly lines into motion with little more than a keystroke.
Moreover, thanks to crowdfunding and social financing at companies like Kickstarter and Quirky, entrepreneurs are no longer dependent on venture capitalists or investment banks to finance their ideas. And with the global reach of the Internet, entrepreneurs are able to sell their products to consumers at home and around the world instantly, while start-ups like Etsy create new platforms and markets to bring buyers and sellers together.
Just as the Web ended the monopoly of mass media, so it is now ending the monopoly of mass manufacturing. Over the next ten years, Anderson explains, countless micro-manufacturers, based on open-source design and DIY manufacturing, will help drive the next big movement in the global economy as the power of bytes—the Long Tail—is transformed into the power to make things again, the Long Tail of things.
Greg Brandeau has joined Maker Media, Inc. as president and chief operating officer to accelerate the growth of the innovative media company that took DIY geek culture mainstream. Spun out from O’Reilly Media, Maker Media brands, MAKE magazine and Maker Faire, are at the forefront of the vibrant and creative community that spawned the global maker movement. An MIT-trained engineer with his own passion for making, Brandeau is a proven leader in working with venerable media organizations such as Pixar and Disney, helping them leverage technology to successfully grow their companies and familiar, beloved brands.
This is big news in the maker world! Worked at NeXT and PIXAR, awesome!
As a few of you know, we recently raised a seed round of funding from True Ventures. Liz Gannes covered it today in AllThingsD.
This project and community has grown into something we’re extremely proud to be part of. When we started, Eric and I talked a lot about trying to maximize ”Return on Adventure”. That’s still the goal. And it’s the entire community that makes it possible. Colin’s trip to Tulum is a perfect example. We want to make sure that being part of this community translates into more excitement and adventure.
True is a great partner. Jon Callaghan and the team understand the new hardware landscape, and understand the value of a strong open-source community. Raising money means we’re going to be able to invest more in the technology as well as the community. For instance, we’re building a new platform – Open Explorer - to make it easier to share your expeditions in real and near-real time. More tools to empower all of us to go further.
123D Circuits is a revolutionary free tool for designing your electronic projects online. You can design in a familiar breadboard view and the app will guide you to make professional printed circuit boards with built in layout tools. When you’re done just click to have your boards professionally manufactured and shipped for free worldwide.
What’s also cool is how you can easily, simultaneously work on the same circuit with your friends. And at any point you can compile and emulate your Arduino code inside a live, editable circuit!
Here is a readable transcript of the talk (avoiding you the pain of guessing what was behind my slides), including links and extra information: My talk is about the state of open hardware entrepreneurship in 2013. I decided to pick 100 open hardware startups. Selection was based on 3 criteria: company had to actually develop and sell physical products (no media, consulting or manufacturing-only startups
We built a Pop Up Hackerspace in a container as part of the Make+ for accelerating Makers’ project through Art. This is first to be host at the Creative Carnival in Shanghai. It’s done and opened over the weekend! It has been a success attracting a lot of visitors interested in 3D printing, robotics and Maker Culture! People come to see projects by the local makers, take workshop on Arduino and 3D printing and having fun talking to the makers. The pop up hackerspace will start its journey around China after the Shanghai Maker Carnival on Oct 19-20.
Even though Red Burns was one of the most influential figures in the tech industry over the past 30 years — most famous for co-founding the groundbreaking Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at NYU, and in a sense, the beginnings of interaction design — it’s not uncommon for technophiles to have never heard her name. Two weeks ago, she passed away. But much more needs to be said about one of the smartest, gutsiest women I ever knew, and about what she thought about education, technology, design … and life.
Red wasn’t particularly interested in IPOs or the latest tech fetish, even though she was always exceptionally proud of her students and their accomplishments. She knew that technology was a means to an end — and that the end was people.
In that simple reframing from technology to empowerment of people, I believe there’s something everyone one of us — whether designer, programmer, entrepreneur, investor, teacher, student, parent, or child — can learn from Red. Especially in a world where we tend to focus on teaching kids to code, debating the flatness of the latest iOS, or discussing the newest and shiniest device still searching for a meaningful application.
Alice has practiced law in the technology area for over ten years, including as Vice President & Associate General Counsel at Rackspace US, Inc. until 2013. While at Rackspace, Alice helped launch the OpenStack project and Foundation, and served on the Foundation’s Legal Affairs Committee. Alice served on Rackspace’s Technical Change Management Board, and founded and managed its Intellectual Property Committee. Alice began her legal career in banking, and has seven years of experience in banking operations and regulatory matters.
The “open” movements (software, data, hardware) are all gaining momentum globally as the engines of discovery and innovation. The open funding movement (crowdfunding) is trying to keep up.
Kickstarter and other platforms are enabling innovative projects that would not have seen the light of day a few years ago. However, it is still illegal in the United States to offer equity securities through crowdfunding. Founders on Kickerstarter and other platforms cannot offer their investors a return on the investment, only a token of appreciation, such as a ticket to an event, or attribution.
Although Congress passed legislation to legalize crowdfunding on April 5, 2012 as part of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, the SEC has been slow to adopt the implementing regulations. There is plenty of public debate about the wisdom of the law, and whether the SEC is legitimately delaying, or is being manipulated by the institutional forces that don’t want a change in the status quo. No need to detail all of that here, and it won’t matter soon since the JOBS act gives the SEC a deadline of September 2013. We should have some regulations soon.
The crowdfunding law, if implemented faithfully, could create investment that is not feasible under the existing financial ethos. Crowdfunders want to invest, not donate, but they may not need a competitive rate of return measured solely by dollars. Community based investors may understand that their investment return includes unmeasurables, such as improvements in their community, the environment, the arts. This orientation toward investing does not compute for many in the financial world, and probably confounds SEC rule makers.
The SEC can scuttle this law by burdening the process with complex rules. The burden of just reading and understanding what is required under existing SEC rules is not insignificant – many thousands of lawyers make an excellent living providing this service for businesses and investors.
Andreessen gave his views on the economics of startups, the app market, wearables, ARM servers, and massive open online courses (MOOCs) during an hourlong fireside chat at Qualcomm’s Uplinq here this week. Here are a few outtakes from his rapid-fire, passionate musings.
On engineering salaries in Silicon Valley:
Engineers are now starting to get paid for their true value, which arguably has not been case for a long time, but it is now, and Google is at heart of this. Google discovered an algorithm change can generate another $100 million in revenue. So now companies are more willing to have superstars, and there are engineers at Google making tens of millions of dollars.
The vast majority of engineers are not getting paid that way. [But] average compensation is also rising behind what I call this Kobe Bryant effect.
So you’ve invented and prototyped a really cool new thing and you’re going to run a Kickstarter campaign – Congratulations! If you’re like us, you might be thinking that once you’ve twisted the last wires and run the final tests, the hard part is over. Boy howdy, are you wrong.
As someone who has shown interest and support in what we’re doing at Dragon Innovation, we wanted to let you know that we are now officially live! We have some very talented teams of hardware entrepreneurs launching awesome products now. We also have a little surprise in there courtesy of one of our clients who has had some experience with crowdfunding, so look out for that. We’re thrilled to have you on our journey as we help Makers navigate the challenges of building and delivering great products. We’ve said it over and over, hardware is hard but we’re here to remove many of the hurdles along the way.
Partners include, GE, ARROW and Freescale. Pebble is listed on there on a project you can back (limited black edition).
Hidden in the sleepy coastal town of Clevedon, UK, lies the secret factory that produces 3D Systems’ CubeX 3D printer. We recently toured the factory to find out how these popular machines are created.
Aside from a modest research and development unit, the entire facility is dedicated to production of CubeX’s. It is indeed a factory; we observed trucks delivering components at one end of the building, while other trucks (or “Lorries”, as they say in the UK) collected boxed finished units at the other end for shipment to points around the globe….
Every Thursday is #3dthursday here at Adafruit! The DIY 3D printing community has passion and dedication for making solid objects from digital models. Recently, we have noticed electronics projects integrated with 3D printed enclosures, brackets, and sculptures, so each Thursday we celebrate and highlight these bold pioneers!
Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!
The Adafruit Learning System has dozens of great tools to get you well on your way to creating incredible works of engineering, interactive art, and design with your 3D printer! If you’ve made a cool project that combines 3D printing and electronics, be sure to let us know, and we’ll feature it here!
Film from 1947 on interesting way-ahead-of-its-time ECME Electronic Circuit Making Equipment assembly line from 1947. Invented by John Sargrove in the 1930s – one wonders how electronics manufacturing might look like if this company hadn’t folded at the end of the 1940s
Shenzhen is known as the Hollywood of Makers. And Huaqiangbei is a must-go place for visitors to Shenzhen. However, it’s not easy for visitors to find the related factories in Shenzhen. Huaqiangbei is like a huge maze to many. That’s why we make this Shenzhen Map for Makers, in the hope of helping you fully experience Shenzhen in a very short time.
It is made up of 2 main parts. One is the general information about the maker-related factories in different areas in Shenzhen and the cities near Shenzhen. The other is map of Huaqiangbei, including the featured products in different buildings and the peripheral information such as traffic, diners, shopping centers, accommodations etc.