Millenial Makers

This Is Maker Faire’s Secret Wall of Animatronic, 3D-Printed Dicks

Screen Shot 2014-09-22 at 12.20.01 AM

At the World Marker Faire this weekend, kids learned to solder and pick locks, a giant animatronic giraffe named Russell roamed the crowd, and tattooed hackers in cowboy hats battled aerial drones in a nerd edition of Thunderdome. But the show’s best kept secret was hidden far away from the family-friendly fun in a far flung corner of the faire.

In a conspicuous tent that emanated giggles, camera shutter clicks and mechanical buzzing, was a giant wall of animatronic, 3D-printed dicks dancing to Tchaikovsky. Read More

Some Assembly Required

BMW Workers Get 3D-Printed Super Thumbs, Are Basically Cyborgs Now

Screen Shot 2014-07-07 at 9.41.31 AM

Each year, smarter, more efficient robots join assembly lines and put skilled mechanics out of a job. But BMW is helping its workers fight back, and has started 3D printing physical enhancements for its factory workers so they can break the rising tide of the machine takeover.

BMW has started custom-designing and 3D printing thumb carapaces to protect workers from the strain of their labor. To develop the super-thumbs, the team at the BMW manufacturing plant in Munich teamed up with the Technical University of Munich’s Ergonomics Department to use 3D printing — which BMW calls the “talk of the town” — to solve the problem of thumb strain. Read More

Expert Thoughts

How 3D Printing Is Bringing An Ancient Art Form Back to the Future

11 Photos

(Photo via Joe Carr)

On my desk sits a small marble bust of the emperor Marcus Aurelius. It was carved in 1840, twenty years before Matthew Arnold’s famous essay about the philosopher king, but a thousand and a half years after the great man walked on earth.

Marcus and the other stoics would say that these years matter very little in the grand scope of time. That between then and now, people have done the same thing they’ve always done: lived, died, slept, cheated, hated, loved, excelled, failed and on and on. Read More