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It’s a 3D printer, an open source 3D printer that spits out bits of plastics, whatever you tell it, and MakerBot Industries make their money by selling kits of these printers.

Let me tell you two cool things. One, these MakerBots can print other MakerBots, almost, or more or less, or just about. So once you’ve bought a printer you can print as many as you want. What you’re actually paying for is the time on their production line, which leads me to the coolest thing.

Back in June, MakerBot Industries was selling kits but that ran out of pulleys or couldn’t print them fast enough. So get this, they got in contact with fans through their blog and said: “hey, if you print us a pulley, by the way, here’s a schematic for it, we’ll pay you a dollar for it, we need 360 of these.” So they got previous customers to make part to sell to new customers. And they paid for it! Distributed manufacture at work, right? It worked so well they did it again in September.

Their customer base is part of their manufacturing, a part of their factory.

Esse texto e a foto foram tiradas de uma apresentação foda – chamada Escalante – da Berg London.

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