3d printing world shrinking?

I attended the annual 2015 3d Printing World show on my Saturday lunch break and instantly recognized two things. The show overall was smaller and less well attended than last year, and DLP had a much greater presence. But that might have just been me being grumpy about working on a Saturday.

Given my history with Makerbot, part of me wanted to take all mynfailed extruders to their table and stand there like and angry brown Ralph Nader warning people of their futures. But I have said before I WANT them to get it right. And to their credit they actually had working machines on the floor this time.

I feel like this should be called “the show that ZBrush built” because it seemed to be the only thing that gathered enough mass on the show floor. It was really the only exhibitor that has the resources and clout the show to command attention because of its roots in the process of 3d printing. That, and a loudspeaker and big projection screens.

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I am actually surprised still how long it has taken for some people to realize that 3d printing has zero future without the ability to either synthesize or expertly manipulate shapes.

Software for building anything you want has come further in my lifetime than most apps I can remember and I would argue that vehemently. The earliest modellers I used could scarcely handle basic primitives let alone multi resolution million plus polygon modles WITH texturing.

That actually has as much to do with hardware really so to be fair being able to make anything digitally still doesn’t mean being able to print it. But oncw you get to the level where you understand 3d modeling deeply enough to target digital AND physical media, you’ve got a winning combo.