As fabbing equipment continues to fall, the ability to create becomes available to more and more people. While I envision a future where people have 3D printing equipment in their homes right beside their 2D (paper) printers, this forum discussion suggests a future in which fabbing equipment is dispersed to the public – but only in select locations:
The vision is for mobile manufacturing and garage fabrication. These home based manufacturing units will take advantage of the internet and logistical networks.
I doubt that many people would be able to afford the equipment for doing this kind of work, so perhaps a Kinkos-like establishment that contracts computer based machining.
I think the zoning laws and home business laws are going to be modified to accommodate these kinds of companies. Most of them would probably sprout up in rural areas and small towns anyhow. We have been seeing this kind of trend for the last 10 years.
I can envision dozens of garage based fabrication plants making products sold to local stores. soft drink manufacturers have had this model for some time. The interesting thing is that design, engineering, and production of low tech things is now easily in the reach of millions of people.
While this may come to pass, it’s only an interim stage before simple fabbing is available to everyone. Eventually very capable fabbing equipment will be found in your home, not in your garage.