I don’t get it.
3-D printers have become increasingly more popular. They’re cool, no doubt. Libraries have begun to jump on this newest bandwagon, installing these new toys in their libraries. A few bloggers have mentioned them; Stephen Abram has a post listing some of the printers available and their prices.
The printers are surprisingly affordable. Here’s my question: what do you actually do with one of these? I mean, you can certainly recreate a bust of Lincoln, like museums would let you do a thousand years ago when I was a kid. But once you’ve exhausted the neato factor, what can you do?
I understand industrial designers having one, in order to create a model of their design. Ditto artists. After that, I draw a blank.
So, libraries, think before you jump. Those of you with experience in these things, please feel free to comment and educate me on the practical uses for a 3-D printer. I’m all ears!