Category Archives: Geek

The Best 3D Printed Gifts For Geeks

Are you looking for the perfect unique gift for a geeky friend or loved one (or even yourself)? Look no further than Shapeways this holiday season. If you’re like me, a tech geek who is experiencing electronics overload and is looking for a cool geeky gift to buy this year that doesn’t run of batteries, I’d suggest exploring a 3D printed product this year. I’ve taken the time to curate some cool 3D printed products that any geek would love this year. Here are my picks!

1) A Personalized 3D printed Wire Frame Astronaut by VidalCris

Screen Shot 2014-11-21 at 11.48.02 AM

2) Mobius Nautilus by JoaBaldwin

Why not give the gift of a Mobius Strip of Mobius strips?

Screen Shot 2014-11-21 at 12.13.00 PM

3) Wave by Egant - Wave is a toy that can unexpectedly transfer liquid using the physics of a syphon.

4) Wyvern Skeleton by Brian Richardson

Screen Shot 2014-11-21 at 12.10.30 PM

5) Stereographic projection grid by Henry Segerman

Do yourself a favor this year and give a product that makes your friends and family appreciate the technology of 3D printing, while making you look awesome for doing it!


 

3D Print iPhone 6 and Apple Watch Accessories

Update: Apple has released the design files for the iPhone 6/iPhone 6 Plus! Page 16 and 17 of this pdf have everything you need to know to design a case for these awesome new phones. Be sure and enter our contest and be one of the first iPhone 6 cases ever 3D Printed!

Original Post: Did you watch the Apple announcement? Are you excited about the new iPhone 6/6plus? Are you counting the seconds until you can get your hands on the Apple Watch?

AppleWatchRender

UPDATE 9/11: Some amazing Shapeways Community Members put together a <beta> 3D CAD file of the Apple Watch! It’s based on the specs Apple announced, and while not Apple official, should serve as a great starting point for all interested in designing Apple Watch accessories. You can download the .stl of the Apple Watch design files here. Special thanks to Michael Christensen for sharing this in our Apple forum!
iPhone6
I’ve been counting the minutes for months now and seeing Phil show off the iPhone 6/iPhone 6 Plus and seeing Super Evil Megacorp’s gaming experience made me drool millions of pixels in anticipation of their September 19th launch into the world. The new iPhone camera has Focus Pixels, which means you’re essentially carrying a DSLR in your pocket. Just imagine, our 3D scans will be sharper than ever!
iphone camera
Shapeways has always been one of the first to market with accessories when new consumer electronics come out. Our communities ability to responsively create designs and leverage our short lead times is unparalleled by any other accessories company in the world. The cases that you’ll see in the Apple store were modeled months ago and have been in production all summer. Alongside the new phones, Apple announced a new line of silicone and leather cases, but I think we know our Nylon looks the coolest when it comes to pimping your iDevices. We are eager to see what cases, stands and accessories you make for this new line of apple products and will handsomely reward those who do it best (details to come when the design files are announced by Apple later in September).
iphones

Design files

Shapeways has a long history of being one of the first to market with iAccessories. We were keeping the iPhone classy back in early 2012 with this 4/4s MacPro Case:macpro case

We gave you the design files the moment they were available for the exciting new iPhone 5, hosting a contest around it. The Sweater Case by ArtizanWork that won is still a favorite of ours to show off at events and through our crew kits!
sweater case
We also brought you the iPad Mini files that same October. All in all, we power over 2600 products that fall in the iPhone category. Let’s round out our Apple Fan Boy and Girl offerings and incorporate all these awesome new products.

Now you can start brainstorming the iPhone 6 and iWatch cases you want to design in our Apple and iGadgets thread in the forum. Hit the sketchbook or the sketchup and get creative! The bigger form factor gives you more design real estate than ever before. We will update this post and announce a contest as soon as Apple releases the Design Files.

On a fun historical and sentimental note, this Apple Fan Girl can’t help but ask, 30 years after Steve Jobs announced the Macintosh (the anniversary is today) do you think Apple is still as innovative as they were under Steve?
timeandsteve


 

Monkey Selfie Becomes A 3D Print

Earlier this week the United States Copy Right regulators ruled that the infamous Monkey Selfie photo that went viral cannot be copyrighted. This quickly prompted Dutch designer Peter Rossdale to 3D model the monkey selfie and bring it to the life for everyone to own as a 3D print in full color sandstone. You can order one of these Monkey Selfie 3D prints here.

Screen Shot 2014-08-28 at 4.11.37 PM

Monkey Selfie 3D printed in Full Color Sandstone
Screen Shot 2014-08-28 at 4.11.54 PM

Monkey Selfie 3D print taking a selfie of itself (Photo by Peter Rossdale)

Screen Shot 2014-08-29 at 7.32.04 PM

Who is Peter Rossdale:

“As an Amsterdam based graphic designer I’ve got 14 years of experience in designing websites, magazines. As my career evolved, I got more and more involved with photo/videography, 3d modeling and animation. All this experience comes in handy in designing 3d printed products. And I hope many more interesting designs will be created via Shapeways!”

The Monkey Selfie 3D model was sculpted using ZBrush which you can see in his video. It’s amazing to see designers inspired by viral trends bringing cool products to life with 3D printing. Which viral trend do you think we’ll see next as a 3D print?


 

Hero Forge, Making Custom 3D Printed Miniatures Easy

Posted by in 3D Printing, API, Apps, Design, DIY, Geek, Toys

Making custom 3D Printed tabletop gaming miniatures is about to get easier with Hero Forge App, and the Shapeways 3D Printing API.  The team at Hero Forge have raised support with a hugely successful Kickstarter campaign to create an app to make custom 3D printed figurines for table top gaming.

Following is the story of how the project came about, why they chose to use Shapeways 3D printing, and how this is a perfect case study, for helping people get exactly what they want with a customization app, and on demand 3D printing at Shapeways.

HERO FORGE ORIGIN STORY

About seven months ago, with bated breath and well-bitten nails, we at Hero Forge launched an ambitious Kickstarter campaign  proposing a new application of 3D printing: customizable tabletop miniatures. The idea was simple: using a WebGL-based app akin to a videogame character creator, users would be able to build a character from a library of parts, poses, and features, then get it 3D printed.

Hero Forge - Grid

The idea for Hero Forge actually came about when we went looking for a service like it, hoping to use it as customers. We’d seen slick WebGL-based apps and had seen all kinds of cool Maker Apps using Shapeways Developer API. We assumed something like Hero Forge would already exist. As it turned out, all the pieces were there but the service itself wasn’t. We decided to make it ourselves.

Going to Kickstarter for funding was a no-brainer. Kickstarter has an incredibly passionate gaming community that’s been jumpstarting role-playing and miniatures projects for years. We really couldn’t have predicted just how amazingly supportive our backers would be, though. We ended up hitting our initial goal within the first three days of our campaign then went on to unlock nine stretch goals. It was exciting to say the least.

WHY IS CUSTOMIZATION IMPORTANT?

There miniatures can mean a lot to tabletop gamers. A player might spend years playing as a single character, and having a mini that really matches their vision is a powerful thing. Unfortunately, finding a miniature that really captures one’s character can be difficult. Nearly all tabletop fans know the frustration of combing through poorly-stocked shelves or browsing low-resolution image galleries looking for just the right combination of features and equipment.

Hero Forge - Closeup 1

We have absolutely amazing team working on the tech, UI, and building a library of weapons, armor, poses, faces, and more. They’re making the building blocks that users will be able to play with, combine, and rearrange until they get something that is legitimately theirs. We want to offer a whole new level of parity between the character in their imagination and the miniature in front of them.

HOW IS 3D PRINTING FACILITATING THIS?

It’s great to have reached a point where 3D printing can do more than prototyping. We’ve gotten to a place where it can produce polished, finished products. There’s no doubt that 3D printing is an integral component of our service. No other manufacturing method would allow for us to produce one-off figures in a cost effective way. Using the Shapeways API provides other huge advantages, too. As a start-up, being able to let an established, proven name handle both manufacturing and shipping is a godsend. It lets us focus on what we really want to be focused on: building an amazing service and designing cool great arms, armor, and characters.

There’s a lot of freedom and flexibility of material offerings, too. We’re taking advantage of that flexibility, offering larger-scale statuettes in stronger, cheaper materials and higher detail, smoother materials for users who want more fidelity in their miniature prints. And in the future, if new materials hit the scenes, adding them to our offerings will be easy.

SONY DSC

At the moment, we’re focused on building an incredible service, and the Shapeways API and manufacturing team are proving to be amazing folks to have on our side. We’ve still got our sights set on launching before the year is out. We really can’t wait to see what people create with what we’re building.

Hero Forge - Group Shot

–Joshua Bennett, Co-Founder of Hero Forge

Photo Credit: MDK Photography (MartinDK108@gmail.com)


 

Flowers Blast Off with the 3D Printed Rocket Test Tube Holder

Posted by in 3D Printed, Geek, Inspiration

What do you get when you combine a rocket, a test tube and 3D printing? Possibly the geekiest vase on the internet to beautify your home.

rocket test tube vase 3D print Shapeways The *rocket test tube holder 25mm by MrNib accepts a standard 25 mm (0.98 inch) diameter test tube to make a nice space age bud vase that you can give to your favorite rocketman, rocketwoman, or friend from another planet.

A segmented friction ring near the top of the holder keeps the test tube from being loose when inserted. There is enough springiness in the design to handle slightly oversized test tubes.

Test tubes are not included but you can purchase them from supply stores like American Science & Surplus.

3D Printed Rocket Test Tube Vase Shapeways

 


 

What the Oculus Rift Acquisition by Facebook means for 3D Printing

The tech world collectively gasped and gossiped yesterday as Facebook announced its purchase of Oculus, a virtual reality headset originally launched on Kickstarter, for a cool $2 Billion Dollars. Safe to say that their 21 year old CEO and his team of are set for life, but what does this mean for the rest of us?


Our very own Brad Dickason rocking his Oculus Rift

In sum:
  1. Hardware is back
  2. People powered product > other stuff
  3. Communities are empowering the future of design meaning innovation is no longer dictated by big brand hegemons
  4. Shapeways, like Oculus, is at the epicenter of this next industrial revolution

Continue reading


 

Use The DevoBots App To Create Your Own Devo Robot

Posted by in Geek

Developed by Kit Robot in collaboration with legendary experimental electronic pop band Devo, DevoBots is an app for Apple iOS devices to design your own army of DevoBots.

DevoBots is a 2 in 1 DEVO Synthesizer featuring unreleased DEVO sounds coupled with a powerful Devo Robot Maker & Photo booth:  

Kit Robot has been working in collaboration with pop icons DEVO to bring you this exclusive App featuring unreleased Sound Loops from the 1980s Devo Archives, allowing you to play and mix your own music using our unique DevoBots loop synthesizer.

Inspired by analogue synths and toy organs from the 1970s, we bring you a sound device reminiscent of DEVOs own synths utilizing their very own sound.

DevoBots is a digital robot assembly kit, like a digital Lego, paper dolls or Mr Potato Head. The user can create millions of robotic characters out of the box using our professionally created assets, mimicking the bands outfits and personas from the past 40 years.

Check out the DevoBots shop on Shapeways to see some of the Devo Robots 3D printed based on configurations within the app.

Then dance… 

Everybody’s dancing to Devo-Bots from Remo Camerota on Vimeo.

Continue reading


 

Shapeways 3D Printing Helps to Bring Gazepoint Eye Tracking to Market

Posted by in Geek

Exciting new startup Gazepoint came to see us last week at SIGGRAPH 2013 in L.A. and showed us their awesome GP3 eye-tracker unit which demonstrates excellent use of Shapeways for prototyping and production.

gazepoint shapeways 3D Print

Gazepoint designed the housing and the matching VESA screen mount, creating several 3D printed prototype iterations, in the short span of under 2 months. The availability of 3D printing and the quick turnaround by Shapeways allowed the Gazepoint team to complete their design and bring it to market much faster than was ever possible before.   We were very impressed with the sleek and efficient design of this product and happy that our technology has helped get it to market.   An eye-tracker is a device that allows a computer to determine where you are looking on a screen. It tracks the user’s gaze point and can be used for control such as a game input, for usability such as web or advertising analysis or even for assistive communication for the disabled.

Much like Shapeways mission is to give everyone access to the tools of manufacturing with 3D printing, Gazepoint’s mission is make these eye tracking devices affordable and available to everyone and to spur development of cool new applications for gaze based technologies!


 

7 Foot Long 3D Printed Necklace Made From 185 Interconnected Octahedrons

VertigoPolka has designed a giant 7 foot long 3D printed necklace of 185 interconnected Octahedrons.  The super cool image may catch your eye but the price will blow your mind.  But if 7 feet of 3D printed awesomeness is too much for you there is also the original 36 Inch Octahedralink Necklace and the mid length 55 Inch version.  Or get all three and strut your stuff with 175 inches (4.45 metres) of 3D printed jewelry around your neck.

giant 3D Printed necklace on Shapeways


 

Designer Spotlight: Remi van Oers

This weeks Designer Spotlight focuses on Remi van Oers, a Dutch designer interested in using 3D printing to solve problems in beautiful, functional ways.
Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I’m a young enthusiastic designer, 26 years old, interested in culture, people, art, architecture & design. I studied at the Dutch Design Academy, and now run my own design company located in a former Philips factory in Eindhoven, a city that breathes creativity and innovation.

shapeways 3D printing remi van oers

What’s the story behind your designs? What inspires you?

That’s a good question. I’m interested in people, and how to improve their daily lives. The longer I work in the design profession, the harder it seems for me to define the profession, and the word! I feel that the word design is misused, design is not about styling or decoration, it’s about solving problems in useful thoughtful ways. In my opinion it should serve people, as good design helps people move forward, in every possible way.  To answer the question; I think I’m inspired by problems and thoughtless solutions. I’m inspired by the opportunity to solve them in an innovative and user friendly way.

shapeways 3D Printing remi van oers

What brought you to 3D printing with Shapeways?

The products in my Shapeways shop, are basically products I needed myself. I couldn’t buy them anywhere so I decided to design them myself. While enjoying the results I thought more people could benefit the solutions and I decided to make my designs available to everyone. That turned out to be a good idea. People where having the same problems and suddenly I was selling thoughful solutions. This was especially visible by the product Clip-it, a simple clip to convert your iPhone charger to a travel dock. The phone is somehow designed to have a flat battery within a day, so designing an easy charging solution made sense and turned out to be something people wanted worldwide.

shapeways 3d printing clipit iphone dock remi van oers

How did you learn how to design in 3D?
In 2002 I started as a student of architecture, and there I was first exposed to Computer Aided Design. I hated it for exactly two weeks, after that the teacher showed me what was going to be possible with CAD and 3D design. It was like seeing the light, I instantly knew that this was going to be the future. From there on, I overloaded my teacher with tons of questions every week, about how to draw specific forms. Luckily, the teacher was a master, he could see from a distance when my lines were not straight. 3D printing was still in its infancy but we used the CAD programs to turn idea sketches into technical drawings and realistic renders. Later during my study as a product designer I dived into the process of turning ideas into test models by using Rapid Prototyping, the start of learning Rapid Manufacturing, currently called 3D Printing.
How do you promote your work?
I don’t do much promotion actually. I discovered that if you make nice products and bring them to notice to people, they will spread the word for you because they like it. That works better than me telling how much I like it myself. I think products that have a reason for being will get discovered, first by a small group and then suddenly get discovered by a lot of people. It did help a lot that some blogs wrote about the products I designed, as the products tell a certain story, the bloggers understand that story and they love to share it with their own words.
Who are your favourite designers or artists? Who in the Shapeways community has served as an inspiration to you?

I’m inspired by lots of influencers, some not even designers. I have great respect for people like Steve Jobs, Bill Moggridge, Charles & Ray Eames, Jonathan Ive, Philippe Starck. To name another designer, I admire Dieter Rams a lot, he of course doesn’t need any further introduction. The work he achieved and how it influenced the product world, it is just phenomenal. From the Shapeways community, I really like the work of the Curve Creative guys.

shapeways 3d printed iphone dock remi van oers
If you weren’t limited by current technologies, what would you want to make using 3D printing?
I trust, that soon, we won’t be so limited anymore. So people are probably naming big things here. But I believe you should never think from the medium as a starting point, or in this case the production method. It limits you then already because you think about a specific process. It’s more interesting to just dream up what you want. What you want may often seem impossible, but by keeping in mind the idea you will notice that with passion you are able to push boundaries. Suddenly you are doing what seemed to be impossible before and are then pushing the boundaries of machining and production. I also think you should use 3D printing process for parts we are not able to make yet with current production technologies. So I’m not necessarily thinking in bigger parts that could be used to build homes. I’m thinking smaller parts here, very detailed, fully assembled in multi materials. I would love to design and realize the next super phone with one shot 3D printing through the upcoming technologies, but would also love to see people developing human organs with it to save peoples lives.
Anything else you want to share?
As a designer I believe in innovation, I believe in people and their will to improve and evolve. 3D printing and other new technologies are embracing these thoughts and therefore soon will change industrial production, change consumer behaviour, change the economic frame, test and change the rules of intellectual  property, change the way companies realize and deliver products. And eventually it will change the way we look at products. I’m positive about the future!

Check out Remi’s beautiful products for your iPhone on his Shapeways Shop, his website, and stay up to date with his designs via Twitter.


 

iPad Mini Case Design Guidelines Now Available : Let’s 3D Print!!!!

The iPhone 5 Design Contest is now over and we are 3D Printing some of our favorites right now (HINT: you may have seen them exposed in the feed) but Apple have just released the specs for the iPad Mini so it is time to start designing for the next range of Apple Fanboy Accessories.

iPad Mini Specifications to 3D Print with Shapeways

You can download the specifications for the Wifi Version and Cellular Version from the apple site (yes, they are ever so slightly different but you may be able to make a design to fit both).

SO, what shall we do to get you all designing some cool new accessories for the iPad Mini?  

What applications do you see for this device that the iPad is too big for and the iPhone too small?

What is the point of differentiation that Apple is aiming for and can you amplify that difference with your design?

Tag Your designs with Apple, Fanboy and Ipad Mini so we can find your designs and we will find a way to reward your creativity.

Thanks to Core 77 for pointing the way to the specs. 


 

Reddit LOVES 3D Printed Designs

Over the past few weeks we have seen a number of 3D printed items get a lot of attention on Reddit driving massive waves of traffic to some Shapeways product pages including Little Sad Keanu, Mario Mobius Strip and most recently the Green Lantern inspired ring by Lensman. Below is a chart of what it looks like when a design becomes popular on Reddit.

If you submit a link to your design on Reddit you have the chance of exposing your designs to thousands of people and increasing the sales in your Shapeways shop.  We know of one Shapeways user who made the daily average of their annual salary in one day of sales on Shapeways when their design was going viral on Reddit….

We look forward to seeing your designs on Reddit soon. 


 

F U I’m an Anteater : More from the 3D Printed Meme Machine

Cheer up Sad Keanu, you have another 3D Printed meme to keep you company.

F U I’m an Anteater is the latest meme to make it’s way out of the internets and into real life thanks to Shapeways 3D Printing you can own a little piece of the internet for only $10. Bargain….

F U I'm an Anteater Shapeways 3D Printed Meme

F U I'm an Anteater Shapeways 3D Printed Meme

What’s it all about? Lets consult Know Your Meme

The original ‘F U, I’m an Anteater’ image first appeared online
in spring of 2008, as a witty protest against the massive amounts of
cute cat and dog pics circulating around internet humor sites, while
many other species had largely been neglected.

Usage

An interesting phenomenon among anteater image macros is the discontinuation of LOLspeak. While most other animal-based macros employ lolspeak, ‘I’m an Anteater’ macros generally use correct spelling as means of
protest against the widespread nature of other animal-based memes.
Although the species is still less popular than its feline and canine
counterparts, it remains a notable mutation of animal image macros, like
the Bukkit Walrus.


 

First 3D Printed iPhone 5 on Shapeways

It Arrived!!!

The first 3D Printed iPhone 5 has landed at Shapeways and along with it an update to the design for the iPhone 5 case templates for the contest we are running at Shapeways where you can win $500 worth of 3D Printing by designing an accessory for the iPhone 5.

There are already over 30 3D Printed products already available on Shapeways to fit the iPhone 5, enter your design in the contest to win.

We have updated the downloadable files for customization now that we have been able to test the fit, especially around the corners for the iPhone 5, the case can be downloaded here, and the bumper here


 

How to Turn 8-Bit Character Sprites into 3D Printable Models

Mikola Lysenko has created an app to turn an 8-Bit character sprite into a 3D printable model with his Shape Carving Editor using WebGL and the Shapeways API.  You can see some of his 8-Bit voxel sprite models in his Shapeways Store.

8-Bit Sprite to 3D Print with Shapeways

To use the Shape Carving Editor to make your own models take a look at Mikola’s blog which has all of the instructions how to use the app along with all of the thinking behind the project…. 

The source code for the client is available on GitHub, so feel free to download it and try it out.

3D Printed Mario from 8-Bit Sprite App on Shapeways