We're a long way off from Star Trek's replicators, but the next best thing is becoming more affordable and popular: 3D Printing. Graham Templeton of geek.com has put together this list of ten objects that prove 3D printing will change the world. Above, the Sad Keanu meme turned into a 3D action figure.
This has been a big year for 3D printing, but to really appreciate the progress it's made we need to look at some of its most ambitious, inventive, or just plain odd products. We've reported in the past the NASA has begun printing shuttle parts that are theoretically mission-ready, and that the process has become so normal as to spawn a vending machine. However, it's in the mass use of digital manufacturing that it will truly change the world, not just streamline the production process for those who were already doing it, but bring that ability to an audience literally thousands of times larger than before.
Here are ten 3D-printing projects from 2012 that show just a bit of the potential of this exciting new technology, either the bold new directions it can allow or the somewhat alarming obsolescence it can forecast for certain industries.
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|“Reliably bottling up miniature stars, inside complex machines on Earth, demands otherworldly amounts of patience.”|
|“A powerful new tool to control which genes get expressed in plants, animals, and even humans.”|
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|“The Amazon Dash button for horny men and women who don’t feel comfortable telling their partner they’d like to have sex.”|
|“How this religious holiday became the rampant, love-fuelled corp-fest.”|
|“A sophisticated global marketing strategy from an industry that is desperate to attract new smokers.”|
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|“When Life Gives You Lemons.”|
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|“We should try fossil-fuel executives for crimes against humanity.”|
|“Could we cover an entire desert in solar panels?”|
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