This week we'll be sharing suggestions on function and form, namely how to choose the right materials for your products. If you are making a product for yourself, it's great to have unlimited choice and to be able to experiment with various materials. But if someone is buying your product, you want to help them choose the best material for your product so they have the best experience possible. For example, your customer probably wouldn't want a ceramic iPhone case or a wedding ring in Frosted Ultra Detail...
To get started, when you upload your model to your shop, all materials are automatically
enabled. It is important to check if all the materials are
appropriate. Ask yourself:
1. Does my design meet the design rules for this material? 2. Would this product make sense in this material? 3. Do I have all materials selected still? If so, can I help customers decide by limiting the choices?
To select materials for your product, the easiest thing to do is to make a material selection when you are editing your product page for markup, description, or other details.
Overall, there are three things to keep in mind: design with the material in mind, use images that reflect the material options, and less is more.
Happy Friday everyone! And what a Friday it is...we're thrilled to be back online. For this week's Friday Finds, we have a selection of planetary 3D printed finds to remind us that some things still remain outside our control.
Orrery by Whystler, who explains that this orrery is a fully functional model of the 4 terrestrial planets: Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. He notes, "Ideal for planning your next interplanetary voyage on your star-galleon."
Shapeways Director of Industrial Engineering Kegan Fisher (@keganfisher) shares our vision for the future of manufacturing as we cut the ribbon on our NYC Factory of the Future.
When we opened the doors to the Shapeways NYC office, we dreamed of building a factory nearby. A factory that would provide the thousands of designers and innovators in NYC a place to bring their products to life.
We are incredibly excited to announce that today marks the beginning of our Factory of the Future in Long Island City. We are cutting the ribbon on our new space with a little help from our friends...including Mayor Bloomberg of NYC and Kenneth Adams, President & CEO of Empire State Development.
Last month we signed a lease, sat down to ideate, and began construction on a massive 25,000 square foot space. Not only will it house 30 to 50 high definition, industrial-sized 3D printers, but it will also be a hub of innovation, research and development, and continuous community exploration.
Historically, the word factory brought up connotations of assembly lines and jump suits and iron and cement. It reminded us of the factory Henry Ford created and has been replicated time and time again.
But today, I am proud to say we are giving the word factory new meaning. One that replaces mass manufacturing with mass customization. One that empowers the independent business, the craftsperson, the hobbyist, and the entrepreneur. We are building a factory that gives everyone the ability to create, where the only barrier to entry is imagination.
What is the future of creativity, manufacturing, and design? How is the
Shapeways community and 3D printing enabling everyone to make their
Jessica Rosenkrantz and Jesse Louis-Rosenberg of Nervous System share how they grow products using computer programs, algorithms and 3D printing. The results are beautiful, organic pieces that reflect objects found in nature.
This is the third film in our series about 3D printing, our
creative community, and how this incredible technology is changing all
of our lives.
By Julian Kollataj, our Production Planning Summer Intern in the Eindhoven office, who returned to Arcada University of Applied Sciences in Helsinki, Finland, where he's studying Plastics Engineering. Who's moved my manufacturing?
So much has happened over the past three months, that I thought I'd like to share with you, the Shapeways Community, some reflections of my internship at Shapeways before those memories start losing their freshness.
I was wondering where to begin this blog. But then it clicked: first, I was in The Netherlands, the land of Gouda, Edam, and Leyden - and famous for their windmills, dikes, clogs, and bicycles! I've now added 3D Printing to this list of associations, because Shapeways is founded there, of course! Then, the thought of cheese led me to the book and parable about change, Who Moved My Cheese? The book came to mind because of the changes that have gone on within Shapeways and how they are positively affecting the manufacturing and consumer industry. It also came to mind because of the growth which I've had as well. (Hmm, thinking about cheese, I was wondering if they can do 3D printing in chocolate, what about cheese? And look what I found - printed cheese!).
So, the internship started at the end of May. I moved temporarily from Helsinki, Finland (currently the World Design Capital 2012), where I'm studying Plastics Engineering and coaching tennis, to join the Shapeways Production Planning Team. Before arriving, I had some ideas of what to expect, but nothing quite like what I was going to experience. In less than three months, I saw Shapeways grow with: more people joining the company; the launch of the new look and feel; a few new 3D printers installed to add greater capacity; and, the biggest change yet was the migration to a completely new software infrastructure for Shapeways' employees, partners, and you, the community members. I even got to be a part of celebrating Shapeways turning four years old, which was loads of fun!
While all of this was happening, I grew too: in understanding and
having a deeper sense of appreciation for the behind-the-scenes
processes of what it takes to get your idea (or rather, an STL file) to
your doorstep; seeing all those amazing models come through and being
inspired to take up more intricate 3D modelling myself; and, what I
thought most valuable, getting a feel for what it means to be a part of
such a dynamic group of motivated people coming together at a start-up
company. As a side note, my foosball skills improved considerably thanks
to the tough competition, though unfortunately I never made a
'klinker,' but did get to crawl (under the table after losing 10-0),
We talk about the future a lot at Shapeways. But we
don't often get to have a conversation about it in the context of other
innovations, including those in food, fashion, product
design, technology, trend forecasting, hospitality, architecture
So we're excited to share
that our CEO Peter Weijmarshausen will be speaking at next week's
Inventours conference. It's a whirlwind one-day experiential innovation
conference on September 28th with New York's leading innovators. Peter
will be joined by leaders from Louis Vuitton, The Whitney, Smart Design, Union Square Hospitality
Group, Pantone, The City Bakery, and others. It's a NY dream team.
3D Printing can help you make anything you can imagine. But what if you don't know how to design? Or what if you don't know where to start?
With the Shapeways marketplace, people all over the world can get a little bit closer to getting exactly what they want. To help put this into perspective, here's some data that blew our minds: the Shapeways marketplace of community designed 3D printed products contains over SIX BILLION product variations.
Considering the number of publicly available products and accounting for the material and customization options readily available, that gets us a little closer to infinite possibility. This is nearly one unique product option for every person on the planet.
Every day at Shapeways, thousands of people make their ideas real with 3D printing, and as a result, the Shapeways community is igniting a culture of creativity. For many, though, 3D printing remains an unbelievable, futuristic technology that creates physical objects from thin air.
We know firsthand that seeing is believing. So we're thrilled to launch a series of films about 3D printing, our creative community, and how this incredible technology is changing all of our lives.
This first video provides an inside look into the Shapeways vision, community, and 3D printing magic.
If you're inspired, help ignite the culture of creativity and share the film!
Happy Friday everyone! For this week's Friday Finds, we have a selection of beautiful 3D printed jewelry in stainless steel and sterling silver. The Olympics may be over, but there's surely some glorious metals going around. We found this in the forums, which has been a fountain of awesomeness, hot of the 3D printer.
Our VP of Engineering Josh Levine shares what's in store for Shapeways this weekend and moving forward:
Last month, we announced that we have taken on a seemingly impossible task: to rebuild the architecture of Shapeways.com. Over the past few months, all of us at Shapeways have contributed to this massive undertaking and through hard work, determination, and a lot of listening to our customers, the time has come to reveal the fruits of our labor!
Notice the little man standing next to this massive 200 ton stone in the
temple Baalbek. This stone is a metaphor for ~60% of our current
software architecture. Most of what you'd like us to build involves moving
the "little" stones (several tons each!) laid neatly beneath the 200
Tonight we are rolling out a major milestone for Shapeways - internally this project is called Inshape 2.0. Tonight, we're moving the 200 ton monster.
Inshape 2.0 completely replaces our back-end systems for Order Placement and Order Fulfillment systems with up-to-date, state-of-the-art technology and processes. In the past, we have had to hold off on so many great ideas from the community - 99% of that is washed away with this release. We anticipate faster turnaround times on orders, and on improvements to our systems.