One of the machines we use is the Objet Eden 500. Objet is an Israeli company that makes 3D printers. At Shapeways our White Detail and our Transparant Detail materials are Objet. These materials have a nice smooth finish and are very detailed.
The main issue with them is temperature sensitivity. So we would recomend you didn't use this material for ashtrays of the like. It does make for very pretty display objects though, such as printed out avatars, real versions of animations and art. The Eden 500
All good things come to an end. Today, I'm leaving my role as community manager for Shapeways (I'm a freelancer so I saw this coming - don't worry!).
So, I'll give a warm welcome to my successor: Joris Peels, who'll be making his appearance here shortly. Interesting times are ahead Joris, I'm sure you'll have a blast!
This doesn't mean I'm leaving Shapeways though - I'll just be spending less time here as I need to focus on some of my other projects. I'll still be blogging, researching 3d technologies, creating the occasional 3d model and giving customer support, so you'll see me around!