3D Printer is Now a Scanner, Too


MakerBot is a consumer product intended to bring 3D printing to the average person. Currently, MakerBot, like all 3D printers, requires a digital instruction set programmed to print out the 3D object. This process is controversial as it is, but incredibly powerful. The potential for 3D printing is more and more obvious every day. But MakerBot’s newly developed feature coming in the near future adds another dimension to 3D printing.

What if you don’t need a digital instruction set to create an object? What if you can scan an existing object into MakerBot, allowing it to create copies at will? The potential benefit is huge. Imagine creating a set of coffee mugs. In case one breaks, you always have duplicates to replace it without having to go buy another set of mugs.

There are dangerous risks with 3D scanning as well. What will stop someone from buying a product in a retail store, scanning and duplicating it, then returning the original product and having their money refunded?

These examples are very small scale, but consider 3D scanning guns and other weaponry that is sold and distributed on the black market. There are very dangerous implications we must address sooner rather than later before these dangerous events occur.

Take a look at the source article from The Verge and picture how MakerBot could revolutionize production for better and for worse.


Source: http://www.theverge.com/2013/3/8/4078396/makerbot-digitizer-desktop-3d-scanner