According to Autodesk CEO Carl Bass, the technology will reinvent more than just maintenance and supply chain practices. It will reinvent work-place collaboration. Nike, Bass said, could use 3D printing technology to send prototypes of new sneakers between offices. The west coast team could print the new design sent over the wires from the east coast team, mark up their changes, and then send back a modified file, complete with design feedback — all in an afternoon.
At the event, Autodesk flaunted a new software design package Autodesk 123D. To demonstrate the suite, Autodesk took 40 photographs of a standing Buddha, circling and capturing the statue from every angle. Those images were then uploaded to the company’s Autodesk 123D Catch servers, and about ten minutes later, it spat out a model suitable for 3D printing. Using a local application, 123D Make, the Autodesk team could then edit the model — and print it out.
“Just think of the implications,” Bass said, not only about his company’s new release — but of the industry in general.
Many have. Everything from custom guitars to custom chocolates to custom bones can be printed today. Companies like MakerBot and Shapeways will do the printing for you — and host a virtual store for your printed goods. You carry no inventory because objects aren’t created until the moment a customer clicks “Buy”.
I am very excited by this. Will this not mean a decentralization of manufacturing? And so a return to a more dispersed way of living?
We on PEI should get behind this