The DreamVendor concept that has been installed at Virginia Tech got lots of positive responses as it hit the news waves recently. Pitted as an “interactive 3D printing station” for students at the university, I must confess to mixed feelings on this when I saw it:
Of course I see the benefits of making the printers more widely available, and as a consumer concept, I think it is absolutely brilliant. I just can’t help thinking that for students in a mechanical engineering department, putting the 3D printers behind glass is self-defeating — they should be getting totally hands on with the machines and the technology. For consumers, on the other hand, plug in an SD card, follow simple instructions and hit print — spot on!