There is perhaps no bigger promoter of 3D printing within the mainstream media than The Economist magazine. Recently they visited the gigantic Euromold conference where many 3D printer manufacturers exhibit their wares - and applications of their tech.
What impressed The Economist was the link between 3D print design and the biological. We've written about this before, but it seems that the concept was much more widespread at Euromold. Here's the Big Idea:
3D Printing permits you to easily make materials that have complex internal patterns.
Why is this so important? It turns out that the zillions of years of bio-evolution identified the best structures for a wide variety of uses. And most of them involve differentiated innards, unlike the common mono-internal-structure manufacturing methods we use today. The difference is that 3D printers can produce complex materials as easily (or in some cases more easily) than standard mono-structures.
So be on the lookout for things made with incredibly strong and lightweight components, fresh out of the printer.
Via The Economist