Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Great Foodini

Back to the Future (1985)

While it's not the instant gratification we all dreamed about for our future, as shown in 80's movie "Back to the Future" (Generation Z, look it up it's a classic), Natural Machines is developing the first commercial 3D food printers called the Foodini. The Foodini claims it will do for food printing what the microwave ovens did for quick, ready to eat meals. As a plus the company claims that it will promote healthy eating as the operator uses fresh ingredients to print the food.

Keep in mind, the Foodini is not a full scale “food replicator” with which one pushes a button and a fully cooked steak or pizza is produced. Some preparation is required to mix and sometimes cook the ingredients that are placed in food capsules and then printed out in accordance to a pre-programmed recipe. Sometimes the printed food will have to be cooked afterwards as well. In many ways the Foodini is a food presenter, printing out a meal in appealing patterns. The meals that the Foodini has produced in testing includes ravioli, pizza, burgers, crackers, and cookies. Thus the meals can either be sweet or savory.

Natural Machines is running a Kickstarter campaign to raise the $100,000 it says it needs to get the Foodini to market. For those contributing to the campaign, the first Foodinis will cost about $999 according to Tech Crunch. Later the food printer will retail for $1,200. The shipping date for the first Foodini is estimated to be in January, 2015.

"Designer" food: Have fun with Foodini and print designer food presentations. Particularly interesting for chefs, restaurants and other food businesses.

Natural Machines is also working with retailers to market pre-made food capsules for those who don’t want to be bothered with the drudgery of mixing their own. It is also looking to the restaurant market as well as the consumer market for its Foodini food printers.

Recent Updates:
As of April 9th, the Foodini will now ship with a built-in scanner. You can scan any object and replicate it's shape digitally with your Foodini and create an endless array of creative presentations. 

As of this posting, Foodini has less than 48 hours to go and still needs a little over $27,000 left to meet it's $100,000 goal. With Kickstarter, it's an all or nothing campaign, so backers who want to see the Foodini come to fruition, will need to rally some support behind them in the next 43 hours!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Consumer Friendly 3D Printer raised $1.89 Million in 2 Days

Still think 3D Printing is all hype? Tell that to M3D who has raised a whopping $1.89 Million dollars of their $50,000 goal on this week. With still 28 days to go, this 3D Printer company certainly has everyone's attention with their "First Truly Consumer 3D Printer" called the Micro.

Promising the features below, M3D's goal is to make 3D printing available to everyday consumers.

1. Most space-efficient 3D printer ever made.
2. Light-weight, portable design fits nicely on your desk.
3. Micro motion chip provides completely automatic leveling and calibration.
4. Most quiet 3D printer ever made.
5. Lowest power consumption 3D printer ever made.
6. Carbon fiber rods: light, sturdy, self-lubricating and long-lasting
7. Ceramic heater for rapid heat-up, power efficiency, reliability and safety.
8. Bold colors. Choose from Silver, Black, Blue, Red, Orange, and Green.
9. New filament materials like Chameleon PLA.
10. Inspirational Micro filament spools.
11. Modernized touch-capable software.
12. Replaceable print beds for alternative materials.
13. Replaceable nozzles for experimenters.
14. Designed for fast assembly in the US for quality control.
15. An ABS-based print bed allows you to print larger ABS parts.

Needless to say, consumers are drooling at the chance to get their hands on one of these babies before it's available to the general public. Early adopters will pick up this printer for only $199 (250 sold out), with estimated delivery date of February 2015. Pledge $899 and see your printer as early as August 2014 (only a handful left of 100). One thing is for sure, if the M3D "Micro" Printer can take some of the technical taboo out of 3D printing, at an affordable price no less, there is no doubt consumers are going to want a 3D printer in their home. We'll keep you updated when the "Micro" is ready to hit the streets.

This is just the beginning folks, 3D printing is here to stay. Just think about when the first dot matrix printer was introduced, and compare it to what we have today. Now flash forward 10 years from now to the 3D Printer, what do you see?

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

3D Printed Skull, Not Science Fiction

3D Printing is making medical history yet again, with the first successful 3D Printed Skull transplant! A 22-year old woman from the Netherlands was suffering from a rare bone-growth disorder, resulting in the thickening of her skull. A typical skull measures approximately 1.5 centimeters in thickness, while this patient's skull had reached an astonishing three times that of a normal skull at 5 centimeters.

The continued pressure on her brain had resulted in vision loss, severe headaches and impaired facial movement. Left untreated the pressure on her brain would have eventually lead to further loss of brain function and possible death.

3d-printed-skull-implant (1)After a 23 hour surgery at the University Medical Center in Utrecht (UMC), brain surgeon Dr. Bon Verweij replaced a large portion of her skull with a 3D printed plastic implant, relieving the pressure being placed on her brain. One of the advantages of 3D Printing is the application of a precise custom fit for patients, further decreasing the odds of rejection.

While the details of the surgery are just being released this week, the procedure actually took place three months ago. Currently the woman is said to be doing well and is back to work, with no visible signs of the procedure, regained vision and no ill side effects at this point.

3D Printed skulls, replacement organs and limbs all sound more like science fiction than reality. However 3D printing is quickly changing that and revolutionizing so many areas of our lives, but none are more exciting and rewarding than those we are seeing in the medical field.

What's next? We can't wait to see...