[vcf-midatlantic] OT: Re: Is it just me or.....

Evan Koblentz evan at vcfed.org
Fri Mar 2 12:17:19 EST 2018

Thread needed OT: subject line prefix.

On Mar 2, 2018 12:12 PM, "Joseph Oprysko via vcf-midatlantic" <
vcf-midatlantic at lists.vintagecomputerfederation.org> wrote:

The quest for technology appears cyclic. All technologies go through their
growing pains. Right now, one of the potentially disruptive consumer
technologies is rapid prototyping, more commonly referred to as 3D printing
m. 3D Printing in various forms has been a technology used by corporations
and in engineering firms for years. The roots of which date back to the
early 1980’s.

I see the current environment around 3D printing in a consumer aspect
appears to closely mimic the growth of the personal computer industry in
the 70’s and 80’s.

One difference I see is that in the late 70’s and early 80’s, the Open
Source movement was also in its infancy, while now, a large share of the
hardware and firmware involved in the current growth of 3D Printers embrace
open source initiatives.

But in contrast, many of the closed source 3D printer manufacturers often
appear to have a more consumer friendly product. So this I suppose from a
very high level is a good “test” of the open source ideology.

Just as many early Linux users and developers thought that the majority of
PC’s would be running open source software. (I’m intentionally separating
the Personal Computers from mobile devices and infrastructure) While there
are a good number of users of open source operating systems, it’s a highly
splintered group, with many of the operating systems based on various major
distributions of the software and operating system.

The open source initiatives have forced the hands a lot of major players in
various industries to embrace, or at least utilize openness in parts of
their products, sometimes it may be a front end UI, sometimes the firmware
or other components. Often there will be a mix of proprietary systems and
open source systems to create a device.

So, where will the 3D printing industry end up?

What is your opinion on this?
Normal Person: Hey, it seems that you know a lot.
Geek: To be honest, it's due to all the surfing I do.
Normal Person: So you go surfing?
Normal Person: But I don't think that has anything to do with knowing a
Geek: I think that's wrong on a fundamental level.
Normal Person: Huh? Huh? What?

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