Friday, August 14, 2009

Operation Fabrication

There's a number of projects out there that offer things...that can build things, including copies of themselves. Such as the Reprap, a machine made of plastic parts that builds machines made of plastic parts. It is a plastic extruder, it melts plastic according to shapes given to the little tiny computer attached to it. Shapes are specified with CAD files.
Someone else found that too big, and a machine that they call the cupcake, because it vaguely resembles a cupcake oven. It works similarly, if somewhat smaller.
Of course, not everyone knows how to put together the CAD files, so there's a repository at ThingIVerse, storing loads of designs. All of this together got me thinking.
This got me thinking that this is as close as we're getting to a sci-fi-esque replicator without being able to teleport things. Open source hardware, it's a beautiful thing.

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