All of us at Shapeways are excited to announce that our community now includes a world record-breaker. Renowned puzzle designer and long-time Shapeways community member Oskar van Deventer has seen his ambitious 17x17x17 rubiks cube go from a wild idea to a real-life 3D printed puzzle. Congrats Oskar!
Oskar started designing his puzzles as a boy at the age of 12 in the Netherlands. More than 30 years later, he has a reputation as one of the world's most prolific puzzle creators. Oskar first started 3D printing twisty puzzles thanks to Bram Cohen, who began posing challenges to Oskar back in 2008. Today, several of his innovations are being sold in traditional toy stores and lots more are available through 3D printing in his Shapeways Shop. Most recently, Oskar's twisty puzzles have been used as a very original way to propose.
When Oskar heard of the world records being set for twisty puzzles, like the 7x7x7, 9x9x9 and 11x11x11 by Panagiotis Verdes from Greece, he wanted to try his hand at setting a new record himself. With sponsorship from his close friend Claus Wenicker, Oskar set about designing and testing a number of prototypes, and his third attempt was printed successfully with Shapeways. Sorting and dyeing all 1539 pieces took Oskar 10 hours of work, followed by 5 hours of assembling. The result is an oversized (140 millimeter, 5.5 inches) and fully functioning "Over The Top" 17x17x17 puzzle.
Oskar will be in New York City on Saturday Feb. 12th, where he'll be unveiling his "Over the Top" cube.
Selling through Shapeways is becoming more fruitful as time goes on. With the media attention and the virtually constant website upgrades sometimes all you have to do is put up some nice photos of a creation to get sales flowing. However, there are many benefits to expanding your Shapeways products to other online markets. 3D printed creations are pretty new to online shopping venues, and there certainly is an appeal to be one of the first few to sell these sorts of things. It's like being on the ship that discovered the 3D printed Americas.
Here is a "treasury" I compiled of 3D printed creations that are currently on Etsy.com (I did shamelessly include one of mine on there , and no, it's not the home printed moustache hair clip):
The Winter Colors are coming to an end we need your help to pick the next Strong & Flexible colors.
The Winter Red is staying until end of February for Valentine's day, and the rest will retire at the end of January. What next batch of colors would you like?
Nancy has made a poll so you can to help us decide on the next batch of colors (deadline to respond is next Wednesday end of day). We have selected a range of colors available from our suppliers, and includes colors we've had available before as options as well. Take a look at the color chart and let us know what colors you would like to see next?
We will take a look at your suggestions, do some testing and introduce a new batch of colors as soon as possible.
Also let us know if there are any colors you would like to see as permanent options like Black Strong and Flexible or are you happy to have seasonal and event based colors?
"Just as personal computers have dramatically changed everyday life, 3-D printers will profoundly affect how products are made, designed and consumed, say Cornell professor Hod Lipson and analyst Melba Kurman in a new report."
Recommendations include: 1. Put a personal manufacturing lab in every school 2. Offer teacher education in basic design and manufacturing technologies in relation to STEM education 3. Create high quality, modular curriculum with optional manufacturing components 4. Enhance after school learning to involve design and manufacturing 5. Allocate federal support for pilot MEPs programs to introduce digital manufacturing to regional manufacturing companies 6. Promote published and open hardware standards and specifications 7. Develop standard file formats for electronic blueprints design files 8. Create a database of CAD files used by government agencies 9. Mandate open geometry/source for unclassified government supplies 10. Establish an “Individual Innovation Research Program” for DIY entrepreneurs 11. Give RFP priority to rural manufacturers that use personal manufacturing 12. Establish an IP “Safe Harbor” for aggregators and one-off producers 13. Explore micropatents as a smaller, simpler, and more agile unit of intellectual property 14. Re-visit consumer safety regulations for personally-fabricated products 15. Introduce a more granular definition of a “small” manufacturing business 16. Pass the National Fab Lab Network Act of 2010, HR 6003 17. “Clean company” tax benefits should include efficient manufacturing 18. Offer a tax break for personal manufacturing businesses on raw materials
19. Fund a Department of Education study on personal manufacturing in STEM education 20. Learn more about user-led product design
Lipson, associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and computer science, and Kurman, of Triple Helix Innovation, make the case for strong government support of such digital fabrication technologies as the authors of a report commissioned by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.
At the moment Trimensional (a mobile device 3D Scanner) is only available on the iPhone 4 and iPod touch 4th Gen. The main reason it's only currently on these two devices is because the way it works is that while the screen of the mobile device faces you it flashes some fancy lights at you while you stare unmoving at the front-facing camera in a dark room (try not to creep everyone out who lives with you, unless you want to).
I saw this 3D scanning application mentioned initially on my feed from the Smithsonian 3D Digitization page that I "like" on Facebook. It was only 99 cents, so I figured it wasn't a big monetary risk to try it out. It was pretty entertaining if not with wonderful accuracy (above is a less than flattering low-res 3D scan of me). But hey, it just came out and the creator himself said he's going to pimp it out a lot more as time goes by. I'm sure most of you reading this blog want to know how these 3D scans apply to 3D printing. There are export features in the works, go to the end of this blog for more info on my email exchange with the creator of this app.