3D printing has captured the hearts and imaginations of many people even though I don’t think it can be considered mainstream yet. At least I don’t think that you can easily get hold of a 3D printer. There is no doubt about the technology’s ability to bring out the creativity in people, though. From printing tiny versions of yourself to printing in bone – the applications of 3D printing are fun! I think my favorite is the 3D chocolate printer – no one can deny the appeal and usefulness of that! [Read more…] about First 3D Printed Plane Takes Flight
Were you always caught up in your biology classes way back when? I remember loving my high school biology class from the get go, only to be thoroughly turned off when the time came for dissecting a frog. I found out – the hard way – that I was not cut out to do anything remotely related to touching/cutting up squishy living things.
Then again, that experience has not totally turned me off molecules and other things that can be rendered on a computer – like this hemoglobin rendition in 3D. Hemoglobin is that “thing” that transports oxygen in our blood. I can’t stand blood, but I can dig hemoglobin. 😉
So these guys from Steffen VFX, a 3D animation studio based in Brooklyn, decided to play around with human hemoglobin – its structure at least – and came up with a 3D model. They worked on this project in tandem with McFarlane Toys.
Now if you think about it, hemoglobin is so minuscule that we can’t see it with the naked eye. That’s where these guys had to do some hard work. From this structure: ((Source: Wikipedia))
They came up with this model which the average person can see and touch: ((Source: Steffen VFX))
The entire process is detailed in the Steffen VFX blog, if you are interested in the nitty gritty. You will also see photos of the making of the model. The details are a little too intense for me, but the finished product is somewhat of a delight to see, even though it somehow reminds me of fish eggs! 😉 The next time I think about blood and oxygen, I am sure my imagination will pull these images up.
Remember those awesome “beasts” that were introduced to the world by Dutch kinetic artist Theo Jansen? They are called strandbeests, and they are made of every day materials such as water bottles, rods, plastic tubes, and rubber rings. The amazing thing about these creations is that they are self-propelling. Given the size of a strandbeest, seeing one in action is probably one of the most amazing sights ever.
Now, the average person will probably not have the opportunity to build or see one of these in real life. It’s a pity, especially since the amount of work and effort put into a single strandbeest is impressive. But what if there was a way to have your very own strandbeest? Not life sized, but something that can join your already huge toy collection.
With 3D printing, this is actually possible! I was quite a skeptic in the beginning with regard to 3D printing and its use, but the more I read about its applications, the more I am convinced about the whole concept.
Now Theo Jansen himself has shared his mini-strandbeest created using 3D printing! It really is fascinating, especially since the creature works just like its big brothers. Here’s the artist showing how it’s done.
I have to admit – it looks like a tiresome process; but then again, I bet the original beasts were just as bothersome, if not more. You also have to think that in order to make something that is worthy of a permanent place in science fiction (as the strandbeests are), you have to go the extra mile. Now 3D printer manufacturers – make them so ordinary people can get hold of these devices!
Calling all narcissists, or those with narcissistic tendencies! Here is the ultimate device for you guys: an installation that can scan you – or whatever you want to be – and then create a mini you. This installation was made by blablabLAB ((blablabLAB)) with the goal of “connecting street users, art, and science.”
And how is this achieved by playing on the love of self of people? Imagine this. You have always wanted to be a great guitarist immortalized through your music. The sad thing is that it doesn’t seem like the guitar responds to your fingers tender manipulations. Is there any way you can ever realize your dream? If you were to pose holding a guitar, acting as if you were playing in the biggest concert of you life, you just might be able to capture that memory via the Be Your Own Souvenir installation.
Using 3 scanners – no less than the Microsoft Kinect, a 3D image of yourself will be created. This image is then translated into a more tangible object via 3D printing, and before you know it, you will have yourself as a souvenir to take home!
The installation was tested in Barcelona on the first month of this year, and it seems that it was a huge hit. Locals and tourists alike stopped by to watch it at work, and not a few indulged themselves as struck whatever pose they fancied. See for yourself.
I think this is brilliant, despite the joke about narcissism earlier. ((Or maybe my narcissistic subconscious is making itself felt.)) If anything, you can create toy figures of the people in your life.
3D printing is fast growing in popularity, and while access to 3D printing may not be that prevalent yet, the interest is definitely there. People have been printing all sorts of things in 3D these days – even chess sets! I don’t think there’s anything cooler – as of now – as what Juliana Meira do Valle and Michael Storey have done. Juliana is a DXArts/Art major and Michael is a Mechanical Engineering major. That is a perfect combination for this kind of project, don’t you think?
Basically, they decided to make meal to use as material for 3D printing. With this meal, they printed out, well, bones. How did they do it? They had two recipes for the bone meal.
Initial Bone Recipe
Powdered Bone Meal — 5 parts by weight.
12x Powdered Sugar — 1 part by weight.
MaltoDextrin —- 1 part by weight.
The other recipe resulted from the fact that they needed something stronger.
Secondary Bone Recipe
Powdered Bone Meal — 4-5 parts by weight.
UF plastic resin glue — 1 part by weight.
This project has huge potential in many different aspects. Think about it – if someone can create “real” bone material, then 3D printing can be used for a host of medical purposes! Less critical – perhaps – but no less interesting is printing out entire skeletons for museums and similar purposes! Mark my words, we are going to hear about 3D printing a whole lot more in the months to come. In the meantime, hats off to these two students!
THIS YEAR’S CES in Las Vegas was the first to host a dedicated 3D Printing Zone, with companies from every corner of the globe showing off their latest 3D printing innovations. While the 3D Printing Zone at CES was home to some exciting gadgets and…
[Read more…] about The 3D printer revolution is coming