Every now and then, when I'm in Los Angeles, I stop by Idealab to see what Bill Gross is up to. About a year ago, in between talking about solar energy gizmos, he mentioned he was working on a 3D printer--a device that could actually make solid objects. He had bought one for his machine shop for $40,000. But he wanted to build one cheap enough for home use.
At the TED Conference earlier this year, Bill was showing a prototype and some of the objects it made. So I decided to look at this more closely. I spent a day with his company, Desktop Factory. I also also visited the Art Center College of Design, which has several 3D printers for use by its indistrial design students.
The article I wrote on this is in Monday's Times.