3D Printing

A Piece of Paper That Folds Itself into a Robot

A Piece of Paper That Folds Itself into a Robot

Imagine a group of flat sheets being sent into space, and then organizing themselves into a satellite. It really seems like some low-budget 1950's science fiction movie. Except for the fact that it'll actually be available. Eventually. As last week saw the world's first robot to fold itself and start working without human interaction. A team at Harvard and MIT created the self-folding robot, inspired by the complex 3-D shapes constructable with origami which were recently published in the journal Science. Sam Felton, a graduate student at Harvard University, says that the robot is made from composite paper, a bendable circuit board and uses the toy, Shrinky Dinks. When heated, the sheet shrinks into small, hard forms. These materials allow for the quick construction of cheap robots, but eventually, Felton said, better materials will help people build objects in places that are more difficult to reach. The self-folding robot that they created is kind of modest, but the future applications […]

3D printing: A Beast Upsetting the Apple Cart?

3D printing: A Beast Upsetting the Apple Cart?

Every time I think I have a handle on 3D printing and its potential to change the world, something comes along to suggest that I have no clue. In general, the big movers in the 3D printing space have employed a razor and blade business model whereby they offer the razor at a significant discount while offering the blades – in this case, printing materials – at a significant price hike. But one company, 3COR, a 3D printing company in Ireland, is turning things on their head by printing with the kind of paper that's readily available in any office and most homes. So there's no effort to lock users into buying proprietary materials at a considerable markup through the printer's life. It's kind of like giving away razor blades to go along with your razor. But, of course, it seems more reasonable to discuss a company which prints with paper on a traditional printing blog. So there's that. Anyway, […]

3D printing. The possibilities are kinda, sorta endless.

3D printing. The possibilities are kinda, sorta endless.

On the one hand, the advent of 3D printing is a little overhyped. It's not as though there's a personal 3D printer out there that can readily spit out anything your heart desires as though you're a futuristic George Jetson clone… yet. But the applications, for anyone who's made of money and in possession of various materials in abundance, are pretty much wide open. There's a little movement in regards to home use, but the real action, thus far, is in the various applications of this on the industrial side. We're in early days, to be certain, but there's no shortage of players seeking to take part in the space. A Chinese company just produced and erected ten homes using a 3D printer. Disney researchers printed a teddy bear and medical researchers are moving closer to the ability to print human organs. It's somewhat mind boggling, really. From airplane builders to auto manufacturers, everyone with money and vision is utilizing […]

Print Your Own Presidential Candidate

Print Your Own Presidential Candidate

You've designed the print, now design the candidate! I know you guys have been waiting for this for a long time, and at last, it's here! Now, through Hotcards, you can design, order, and have printed your very own Presidential candidate! Why jump on someone else's bandwagon? With our 'print your own candidate' technology, you can create your ideal frontrunner, all from the comfort of your own home. How do we do it? The fact is that 3-D printing technology has evolved a lot since last you checked the internet. And since last you checked in with Hotcards, we grew weary of printing things that don't walk or talk or campaign on the issues that really matter. So, we finally ordered ourselves up a 3-D printer. Using a starch-based powder, or, if you prefer, granulated sugar, we can now print out a full-sized, 3-dimensional Presidential candidate, designed to your specifications. Then, by using a combination of natural dyes blessed by […]

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