Another virtuous loop in 3d printing/metaverses

It is a few years back now that we started to see applications that would print our digital 3d designs form Second Life out into physical form. Now the current king of user generated content in a 3d multi user virtual world toolkit/game (metaverse) – Minecraft, is getting the same treatment.
Eric Haines has created an open source package to help go from the digital blocks of Minecraft to a file format suitable for 3d printing.

Whilst there is a pursuit of mesh reality in Second Life, smooth curves flowing lines Minecraft’s charm is that everything looks blocky, but you can still be creative in the use of those blocks and colours. (i.e. there is a prim and its a cube (there are a few extra shapes 🙂 ). It is so far way from the uncanny valley, yet it is actually full of valleys in its digital representations.
What I think is great is that its the same cycle as in 2006, in 2011/12 but with even more buy in at the game level, and lots of education uses. Plus this time around we have services like Shapeways to print with.
More please 🙂

3 thoughts on “Another virtuous loop in 3d printing/metaverses

  1. There were some second life services back in 2006 that used a opengl mesh ripper OGLE to start to get the things from second life (services like fabjectory). a regular mesh or prim to mesh needs some work to become an actual solid description needed for a printer . It may be that some of the exporters that are moving SL and opensim elements to Unity3d are the first step to get something that works in a normal 3d package that can then be saved with the seams in the right place for printing. I am sure it will happen again. Once I have built my reprap (still in pieces a 70 miles from me :)) I will start having a look.
    I am still convinced that the combination of user created virtual world and 3d printer forms a perfect alliance. The virtual world provides distribution and prototyping of ideas, and the physical world becomes an expression of those.

  2. Pingback: The future of tech education – ICT upgrades to open source « Life at the Feeding Edge

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