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New Developments May Change Expectations on 3D Printing

Posted by Jeff Moad on Mar 24, 2015

Network_Design.jpgSome analysts like to talk about the hype cycle for emerging technologies. In the early phases of a new technology’s life cycle, expectations can quickly reach a peak of sometimes unjustified excitement which is quickly followed by a trough of disillusionment and a gradual realization of the technology’s true potential for productivity.

It’s a cute construct. But, it doesn’t seem to fit the 3D printing/additive manufacturing phenomenon. A lot of folks remain stuck at the peak-of-expectations stage, convinced that 3D printing will undermine and transform traditional forms of production and turn everyone into a designer and manufacturer. Many of these advocates, though, don’t have much direct experience with the traditional forms of manufacturing that they expect to be disrupted by this “new” technology that happens to date back to the early 1980s.

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