David Kirkpatrick

October 13, 2008

The latest Shapeways news

Filed under: Business, Technology — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 2:22 pm

I’ve blogged about this innovative company before, and here from KurzweilAI.net is the latest news on Shapeways. 3D modeling is a very cool field.

3-D Printing on Demand
The Future of Things, Oct. 9, 2008

Shapeways.com is beta testing a new service allowing people to print three dimensional models.


Customers can upload designs or use a creation tool hosted at the Shapeways website then order a printed model of their designs for less than $3 per square centimeter. The printed items are shipped to the customer in ten days or less, bringing 3-D printing directly to consumers.

Read Original Article>>

August 15, 2008

Shapeways offers online 3D modeling tool

Filed under: Arts, Business, Science, Technology — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 5:28 pm

I blogged about Shapeways a couple of weeks ago here and the latest update about the consumer 3D company popped up in the inbox today. The company is announcing the Shapeways Creator Engine, an online tool for 3D modeling.

Like I mentioned in my earlier post on Shapeways, I do communications consulting for a company in the 3D visualization and modeling space and it’s a fairly esoteric and very expensive industry for operations at any level.

The high end will remain up in the stratosphere, but I think it’s great Shapeways is bringing this tech “to the masses,” so to speak. Without having a closer look at its tools and process, it seems Shapeways is offering a reasonable entry into the world of 3D visualization and modeling for professionals and hobbyists alike.

Here’s the release sent to me today:


 Shapeways Creator Enables Affordable Personal Design and Manufacturing with New Easy-To-Use 3D Online Customization

August 12, 2008 – Los Angeles, CA- SIGGRAPH, Booth #138 – Shapeways, a new platform and global community for 3D-design and production, takes
a major step towards the next generation of consumer co-creation with the announcement of the Shapeways Creator Engine. For the first time, consumers without 3D modeling skills can shape, mash, imprint and design their own 3D products in just a few mouse clicks at Shapeways.com. From lamps with a personal message to fruit bowls linking back to memorable moments, the Shapeways Creator Engine has a beta library of predesigned product templates which is expected to
grow rapidly over 2009.

“We recognize the desire of consumers who want to own or give something that is unique and has their special, personal touch,” commented Peter Weijmarshausen, CEO of Shapeways. “With the Creator Engine, now anyone can participate in the artistic process and create something that is truly a reflection of their own needs and tastes.
With the Creator Engine, we have broken the currently existingtrade-off between freedom of design and the complexity of the design process.”

“In today’s world, consumers are universally less and less satisfied with the choice that the usual shops offer,” said Jochem de Boer, CMO of Shapeways. “Instead, they are looking for ways to reflect their personal identity in the objects that they choose to have around them, or that they carefully select as a unique gift for their loved ones.”

Shapeways offers 3D modelers an affordable, web-based platform to share and produce their designs imported directly from popular 3D modeling software via a technique called 3D printing. Shapeways verifies objects to ensure printability and provides a real-time cost estimate. Within 10 working days, a tangible 3D product will be produced and arrive at the consumer’s home globally.

To experience the new Shapeways Creator Engine and the Shapeways community, log-on to:http://www.shapeways.com/

About Shapeways
Shapeways is the first online 3D consumer co-creation community. Harnessing the power of a creative community and a global network of production service partners, Shapeways ensures the most cost-efficient, reliable manufacturing and order fulfillment for digital manufacturing today. Shapeways is spinning-out from the
Lifestyle Incubator of Royal Philips Electronics, located in Eindhoven, The Netherlands.

July 31, 2008

The Kinko’s of 3D printing

Filed under: Science, Technology — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 12:32 am

A company I provide communications consulting for is in the 3D visualization and modeling space. The modeling involves “printing” a 3D image in polymers. A very cool and very expensive process. I’ve held a printed hand that exactly matched the original scan — size, fingerprints, everything. But, instead of soft flesh it was a rigid piece of white plastic.

This Technology Review story covers a new online service providing access to 3D rapid prototyping for anyone with a 3D modeled item in ready data form. A real breakthrough in putting cutting-edge technology in the hands of the masses.

One application of rapid prototyping 3D data is “mass customization” — gaining the benefits of mass production for customized items. And it significantly speeds up the development process.

From the link:

Currently, such 3-D printers–in which successive layers of different polymers are sprayed gradually, building up a 3-D object–are very expensive, says Peter Weijmarshausen, CEO of Shapeways, a spinout from Philips Research, in Eindhoven, the Netherlands.

But the new service, launched last week, makes this technology accessible to anyone: budding artists, architects, product designers, and general hobbyists. A small design company might want to make samples to show a client, or an artist might want to make copies of the same sculpture created digitally, for example.

“From a technology viewpoint, Shapeways is not that new,” says Weijmarshausen. “Rapid prototyping has been used by the aircraft and automotive industries for years, but now we’re making it accessible to consumers.”

Users submit their design in digital form, after which Shapeways’s software checks it over to ensure that it can be made. Shapeways then passes the design to its production line of polymer printers, delivering the tangible object within 10 days of ordering, with prices typically between $50 and $150.