3D Printing Buildings

Ask the average person on the street what they know about 3D printing, and you’ll find that they’ve maybe heard about the desktop devices that make little widgets. They probably won’t tell you about 3D printing a building.

But, that’s what’s happening in China. The Chinese didn’t put a machine on-site and build the entire building in place. They built components off-site, then assembled them into a building at the location. But, they’re supposedly recycling waste material into the concrete mixture as a binder, which makes it lower cost and environmentally responsible.

There was a Minnesota man who 3D printed a castle in his back yard. His next project was going to be printing a full house. What I think we need to consider is having some government funding into researching projects like this.

Patents and 3D Printing

On the heels of the last two weeks of posts on IP rights and Open Source solutions, I suggest you read this article from Make magazine.

A small excerpt from the article:

Patents exist for a reason; innovation is not free or even cheap. But who says the way we’re doing it now works very well at all? Large producing firms defensively acquire patents as leverage in the event they are sued by a competitor. So-called “patent trolls” buy patents like lottery tickets while wielding the letter of the law as a thief would a gun; extorting value they did not earn while leaving their victims shaken and thankful more was not taken from them.

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