3D Printing Will Empower Most Innovative Decade in History – Forbes
Forbes contributor Vivek Wadhwa explains why he believes this will be the most innovative decade in history. Wadhwa is Vice President of Academics and Innovation at Singularity University. Here is his general view:
Why am I so optimistic? Because of the wide assortment of technologies that are advancing at exponential rates and converging. They are enabling small teams to do what was once only possible for governments and large corporations. These exponential technologies will help us solve many of humanity’s grand challenges, including energy, education, water, food, and health.
Among the technologies he cites as game changing this decade, 3D printing has a main feature:
In an emerging field called digital manufacturing, 3D printers enable the production of physical mechanical devices, medical implants, jewelry, and even clothing. These printers use something like a toothpaste tube of plastic or other material held vertically in an X-Y plotter that squirts out thin layers of tiny dots of material that build up, layer by layer, to produce a 3D replica of the computer-generated design. The cheapest 3D printers, which print rudimentary objects, currently sell for between $500 and $1000. Soon, we will have printers for this price that can print toys and household goods. Within this decade, we will see 3D printers doing the small-scale production of previously labor-intensive crafts and goods. In the next decade, we can expect local manufacture of the majority of goods; 3D printing of buildings and electronics; and the rise of a creative class empowered by digital making.
Other technologies Wadhwa mentions include genome sequencing, nanotechnology, micro-electrical-mechanical systems, and artificial intelligence.
Read the full post at Forbes.
Vivek Wadhwa photo by BAIA used under Creative Commons license.