3D printing

MakerBot releases Android app to control 3D printers

MakerBot releases Android app to control 3D printers

As most often the case, iOS usually gets its version of an app first before Android. Now fans of Google's mobile platform need not be green-eyed anymore. MakerBot has finally released an Android app for its 3D printers that will enable users to control and monitor their 3D printing activities from a bit of a distance. But don't go dreaming of starting a print from your office and arriving home to see it finished, as the app doesn't work that way just yet.

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Mansion and apartment block created using 3D printer in China

Mansion and apartment block created using 3D printer in China

Last year news began surfacing of industrious folks who had big dreams -- literally big -- for 3D printing, namely using the technology to "print" houses one layer at a time. One Chinese company in particular demonstrated this last year by printing single homes, and it seems it has been busy refining the technology since then. Latest among its creations are two massive structures, both likewise created using 3D printing: a mansion and an apartment block. Both of them are said to be proof-of-concept creations, but they demonstrate how the future of affordable, quickly-produced homes might come about.

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Voxel8 3D printer can print working electronics

Voxel8 3D printer can print working electronics

There are plenty of 3D printers on the market that makers use to create the enclosures for all sorts of electronic devices. A new 3D printer has hit the market called the Voxel8 and this 3D printer can print actual working electronics, something few other 3D printers are capable of doing. This printer turned up at CES earlier this month and lets users combine plastic, conductive ink, and electronic components into the same object.

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3Doodler 2.0 hands-on: thinner, lighter, better

3Doodler 2.0 hands-on: thinner, lighter, better

3Doodler may have only been looking for $30k in crowdfunding for their second-gen 3D art pen, but with ten times that amount raised in a matter of hours the stakes are high. Completely redesigned from top to tip, the body frame is thinner, quieter, and most importantly easier to handle. The new JetPack accessory is a portable battery power pack that follows you so you’re not forced to hug a wall anymore. Question is, has 3Doodler done enough to warrant an upgrade? I went hands-on to find out.

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3Doodler 2.0 goes metal for better 3D drawing

3Doodler 2.0 goes metal for better 3D drawing

3Doodler was the surprise hit of 2013, a handheld 3D drawing pen capable of sketching physical objects using concepts borrowed from 3D printers, and now the team is back with version two. 3Doodler 2.0 is a complete rework of the original, swapping the plastic casing for a trimmer aluminum form-factor, dropping its weight to 50g, and running longer than before with the promise of more precise plastic ink extrusion.

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Polyes Q1 3D printing pen includes integrated blue light

Polyes Q1 3D printing pen includes integrated blue light

By this point, 3D printing pens aren't anything new. We've seen different versions of them, including the 3Doodler pen that hit Kickstarter back in 2013. Now the crowdfunding website is home to a similar device, one that promises to trump all of its competitors via the inclusion of an integrated blue light. With this blue light, the Polyes Q1 3D printing pen's photo-polymer "ink" is cured quickly for a safer three dimensional drawing experience, improving upon the ABS/PLA materials used by alternatives.

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3D printed yearbook helps the blind remember high school

3D printed yearbook helps the blind remember high school

In this digital and visual age, we usually take for granted some of the things that we can see. But what about those who don't have the gift of sight? Fortunately, the same technology that can produce plastic models or artificial dog limbs has become sophisticated and accessible enough that even the blind can benefit from advances in 3D printing. Like for example, this 3D printed yearbook that gives blind students a chance to remember not just the names but also the faces of their classmates and friends.

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NASA emailed new socket wrench to ISS astronauts

NASA emailed new socket wrench to ISS astronauts

We have a winner for the most interesting email attachment of 2014! NASA recently provided the astronauts currently aboard the International Space Station (ISS) with a new tool via little more than a standard email. The attachment was actually instructions for a special 3D printer the astronauts have thanks to a delivery from a SpaceX Dragon capsule back in September. The printer is specially made to work in low gravity, and the emailed instructions included the design for a socket wrench that was specifically needed.

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3D Printing gives a dog back his legs

3D Printing gives a dog back his legs

We've seen 3D printers churn out amazing things, sometimes even unbelievable things, and once in a while ridiculous things. But what if 3D printing could do something amazing, selfless, and heart-warming as well? That can definitely happen with a bit of imagination, creativity, science, and the will to put the technology to even better use, as in this case of Derby, a handicapped canine that was able to experience first hand the empowering benefits of 3D printing. With a little help from humans, of course.

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