3D printing has become a powerful tool in the classroom. It allows educators to teach 21st century skills and bring the design process to life through collaborative, project-based learning. For many educators, even those who recognize these benefits, integrating 3D printers in the classroom can still be difficult. Finding relevant projects and creating curricula are two major challenges.
To fill that gap, MakerBot recently added a new feature to Thingiverse. We’re proud to announce that people will now be able to share and discover 3D printing project ideas with detailed instructions and multimedia events. As the world’s largest design community, Thingiverse is already a popular destination for educators, so this feature should only enrich their experience by giving them access to more projects recommended by Thingiverse users around the globe.
Helping out a Healthcare Occupations Class at Red Bluff High School
No matter where you are or what you’re doing, get ready to cheer on those Spartans at Red Bluff High School! They’re celebrating a major first —and we’re celebrating with them. This high school in Northern California is the first school to Buy Two, Get One with MakerBot. They bought two MakerBot® Replicator® Desktop 3D Printers and received a refurbished model for free. Businesses can also participate with Buy Two, Give One.
To prepare their students for the jobs of the future, Red Bluff High School is going far beyond offering a garden variety education. Just ask Rochelle Barajas and Stan Twitchell; they’re both Project Lead the Way (PLTW) and Career and Technical Education (CTE) teachers there.
A MakerBot Innovation Center is a serious commitment to 3D printing. With it, a university can provide unique opportunities for students, faculty, and the community that would be impossible or very difficult to create otherwise. Those might include campus-wide access to 3D printing, a centralized hub for STEAM learning, cross-departmental collaboration, stronger relationships with local entrepreneurs, and regional notoriety for the university. Take a look at any university with an established MakerBot Innovation Center and you’ll find living proof.
For university educators and administrators out there, even if you’ve already decided that you want a MakerBot Innovation Center, you will still need to fund it. Since that funding process can vary greatly between universities, it isn’t always easy or straightforward to navigate. As a result, MakerBot is proud to offer Strategies for Funding a MakerBot Innovation Center at Your University. This white paper investigates and analyzes the funding process at universities with a MakerBot Innovation Center through six case studies.
Let’s face it. The human body is an imperfect machine working in an imperfect world. For example, damaged heart tissue cannot repair itself. So anyone with a serious enough heart issue must wait for a transplant. Over 4,000 Americans are on the waiting list today.
Adam Feinberg, Professor at Carnegie Mellon and his colleagues are paving the way for a new breakthrough treatment using MakerBot’s 3D printers: custom-made tissues and organs for your body.
As their findings in the Journal of Science Advances demonstrate, Feinberg and his colleagues have cleared the first hurdle to this treatment. Before you can grow living cells into a tissue or organ, you first need a scaffold in the shape of an artery, organ, or tissue onto which to grow living cells. The problem is, collagen, alginate, and other proteins that might work won’t hold their shape if you just 3D print them. Read the rest of this entry »
At MakerBot we continuously improve our products to provide our customers with the best possible 3D printing experience. The latest example is MakerBot Desktop 3.8 where you can now 3D print designs 30% faster and with stronger structural support.
“MakerBot’s latest software update allows our customers to turn their ideas into physical objects even faster, combining faster print speed with one click 3D printing,” said Nadav Goshen, president of MakerBot. “MakerBot’s leading 3D printing Ecosystem connects hardware with software and apps to provide a seamless 3D printing experience that is unmatched in the industry.”
Better, Faster Printing
MakerBot Desktop offers several different infill patterns that you can use to optimize your prints for strength or speed. In MakerBot Desktop 3.8, we’ve added the diamond infill pattern. In our testing with this pattern, most designs, like this Brilliant Cut Diamond by Cymon, will print stronger and 30% faster than on MakerBot Desktop 3.6.*
MakerBot has an in-house team dedicated to continuously improving print speed and quality by developing new slicing algorithms. Slicing is the process of turning a 3D design into a 3D printable file. The result of this team’s work is the new diamond infill pattern, which allows the extruder to move faster during turns. Diamond infill is also extruded more consistently than other infill patterns, making it structurally stronger.
The new speed improvements are a result of the diamond infill pattern in conjunction with the variable layer height feature introduced in MakerBot Desktop 3.7. With variable layer height printing, the inside of a 3D print, or the infill, can be 3D printed at a thicker layer height than the outer layers, or the shell. The more your object is printed at that higher layer height, the faster the print will be overall.
Better Print Time Estimates
Want to know when your print will finish? MakerBot Desktop 3.8 features a new and improved algorithm for print time estimation, so your print will be finished when you expect it to be finished.
One Click 3D Printing
MakerBot Desktop 3.8 streamlines the print flow to give you one-click 3D printing. You no longer have to wait for slicing to complete before being prompted to start your print. Your print will start immediately after your model is sliced. This release is all about getting you from the design to a 3D print faster.
Make sure to upgrade to the latest version of MakerBot Desktop today if you have a MakerBot Replicator, Replicator 2, MakerBot Replicator 2X, or any Fifth Generation MakerBot Replicator 3D Printer.
After installing MakerBot Desktop 3.8, you should also upgrade your 3D printer to Firmware 1.8. Taking advantage of the fact that MakerBot 3D Printers are Wi-Fi connected, Firmware 1.8 allows you to update to future firmware versions right from your 3D printer.
About MakerBot Desktop 3.8 and Firmware 1.8
MakerBot Desktop provides a complete, free 3D printing solution for discovering, managing, and sharing your 3D prints. From MakerBot Desktop, you can access more than a million free designs in MakerBot Thingiverse, the world’s largest 3D design community.
MakerBot’s Firmware allows you to take advantage of the latest features and improvements for your MakerBot 3D printer.
Thingiverse, the world’s largest 3D design community, just reached a landmark one million uploads and 200 million downloads! What began in 2008 as a website exclusively for the burgeoning maker community has grown into a robust gateway to 3D printing and 3D design for hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. Educators, professional engineers, designers, and 3D printing enthusiasts are all taking part.
“We believe that the impact Thingiverse has had on 3D printing and 3D design in its seven years is tremendous,” said Nadav Goshen, president of MakerBot. “Thingiverse has helped popularize 3D printing by creating a vibrant community and making it easy to discover, make and share 3D designs. It has become the go-to place on the Internet for anyone interested in 3D design and 3D printing. We are excited to see what people come up with next.”
MakerBot founded Thingiverse in a Brooklyn-based hacker space so there was a place on the Internet where people could share designs for physical objects. At the time, such a site didn’t exist. Most of Thingiverse’s first users were small-scale manufacturers, engineers, or people who owned a 3D printer. During its first six months, the site averaged between 30 and 40 uploads per week. Today, Thingiverse boasts more than 2 million active monthly users and 1.7 million downloads per month. It is also the home to a number of competitions like theAssistive Technology andFall STEAM Challenges, which invite community members to collaborate and create across the globe.
MakerBot Thingiverse has evolved from a community geared around simply sharing 3D designs on the web into a broad community of collaborators. One of many milestones in the site’s history was the 2013 introduction ofThingiverse Customizer, which allows Thingiverse users to easily customize existing 3D designs. Customizer not only made 3D design more accessible for those who aren’t familiar with professional 3D design software but also opened the door for more collaboration among its users.
One example of the collaborations on Thingiverse is the creation of theRobohand. Through Thingiverse, a woodworker from Johannesburg, South Africa, and a theatrical prop designer from Seattle, Washington, were able to work together across 10,000 miles to create a prosthetic hand that has been used to better the lives of hundreds of people across the globe. Now, a larger community of doctors, hobbyists, educators and engineers on Thingiverse continue to improve upon the original Robohand design, with the goal of enabling low cost prosthetics for people who otherwise wouldn’t get them.
Educators across the country are using Thingiverse to teach their students problem solving and collaboration to encourage them to apply ideas and designs to real-world problems. According to MakerBot’s market research, 79 percent of teachers who use MakerBot 3D printers use Thingiverse in the classroom*. MakerBot also offers dedicated resources for educators on Thingiverse, such as design challenges andJumpstart, which serves as an introduction to a number of free design programs that can help people bring their ideas to the physical world.
An increasing number of educators throughout the U.S. are integrating MakerBot® Desktop 3D Printers in the classroom to teach 21st century skills and encourage project-based learning. To spur wider access to 3D printing, MakerBot is launching the Buy Two, Give One promotion today. Customers who purchase two new MakerBot Replicator® Desktop 3D Printers with MakerCare® can donate a refurbished MakerBot Replicator to the school of their choice. This promotion is available at makerbot.com or at any one of these participating partners: Best Buy, B&H, CDW, Dell, Home Depot, PCM, Staples, SHI, and VWR.
The MakerBot Buy Two, Give One promotion offers customers the chance to recognize, celebrate, and lift up schools with 3D printing. Startups, small businesses, and 3D printing professionals can give back to their community and help students aspire to greater innovation. While any school is eligible for a donation, schools can also purchase two 3D printers and get a third refurbished model free. The donations and MakerBot’s free educational resources will empower teachers to engage, excite, and energize students by bringing STEAM and design ideas to life. And for all the fun, project-based learning, 3D printing will also prepare students for the jobs of the future. To learn more about Buy Two Give One, visit this page.
Manning Elementary School in Manning, South Carolina, is one example of how 3D printing can help schools engage with the community and make connections between learning and real world applications. Teacher Johnson Smith is working with students to create 3D printed models of a large vacant building in town to help convince their local government to convert it into a fun park for the community.
To further help educators integrate 3D printing in the classroom, MakerBot provides a range of resources which can be found on the new MakerBot Education Resource Center. MakerBot in the Classroom, for example, is a handbook with real-world MakerBot stories, videos, and challenges for teachers and students. For schools and universities that need all-in-one educational products, the MakerBot Starter Lab is a scalable, reliable 3D printing solution that is easy to implement, and the MakerBot Innovation Center is an even larger-scale custom 3D printing hub.
Over the past six months, since I joined MakerBot as CEO, I’ve been incredibly impressed by the passion and talent within our company and community.
We have achieved a lot as a team, but we have also been impacted by the broader challenges in our industry. For the last few quarters, we did not meet our ambitious goals and we have to make significant changes to ensure MakerBot’s future growth and success. In order to lead our dynamic industry, we need to get back to our entrepreneurial spirit and address our fractured organizational structure.
Having had time to get deeply rooted in our business, understand our challenges, and learn the strengths of our managers, we have been working on a plan to move us toward a stronger future.
We have spent a lot of time evaluating the market and understanding our customers so we can make plans on how to move forward strategically. These decisions were not taken lightly. Today we will part with some of our exceptionally talented and hard working colleagues, and I’d like to thank them for their commitment and contributions.
Starting today, we are making significant changes including:
• Reorganizing our teams and reducing our staff by 20% globally
• Changing our leadership team to focus on our people and the MakerBot 3D Ecosystem
• Moving our R&D teams from Industry City in Brooklyn to our corporate headquarters at MetroTech in Downtown Brooklyn. This will bring our teams closer together, ensuring more collaboration and easier communication. The MakerBot Factory will remain in Industry City in Brooklyn.
• Setting a defined product development plan that is centered around building connected products within our ecosystem
• Working with a contract manufacturer to produce 4th generation products to save on costs and focus our teams at our factory in Brooklyn on our current generation of MakerBot 3D printers
I brought on Kavita Vora as our Chief of People to create a company and culture that is focused on our people. Nothing is more important to me. I have also bolstered our company by adding Nadav Goshen as our President. Nadav and his teams are focused on building out our world-class ecosystem and supporting our community better than we ever have. He will ensure that strategy around our product offering, ecosystem and brand are in full alignment.
For us to succeed, our employees, customers and community will be our #1 priority. I remain highly optimistic about MakerBot and I am excited about our future.
Ever need 150 custom napkin holders, or 5,000 keychains for your corporate event? How about a few hundred snowflakes for your retail display? Wedding favors, custom widgets, company swag? MakerBot can help.
We partner with a network of vendors who rapidly 3D print products, logos, models, or parts to your specification.
Voodoo Manufacturing, one of our top vendors, gave us a behind-the-scenes look at how your projects come to 3D printed life.
Who is Voodoo?
Voodoo was founded this year by a team of former MakerBot engineers. With more than 100 MakerBot Replicator 3D Printers, they use the MakerBot Innovation Center Management Platform to manage their workflow, and they can help us help you with just about any project you dream up.
How does it work?
First, check out the MakerBot 3D Printed Products page. Then, gather your details and request a quote for anything between 50 and 10,000 units. We will forward your request to a partner like Voodoo.
They will then set up an introductory phone call with you to determine the scope of your project and answer questions. If needed, they have designers who can help turn your concept into a ready-to-print design. Based on your specifications, they’ll put together a comprehensive quote. Most projects are completed within one week, while large orders of 10,000 parts can take up to three weeks.
How do you teach the engineering students of today? Many high-school graduates arrive at college with strong academic skills and relatively little practical experience with turning their ideas into reality. Shop classes are less common in schools these days.
“With desktop 3D printing, you can develop creativity and the engineering at the same time,” says Darryll Pines, dean of the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland. The Clark School, which is ranked among the top engineering schools in the world, incorporated MakerBot into its foundational Introduction to Engineering Design course, a requirement for all engineering majors, in the fall of 2014. The two students in this video, Justin Albrecht and Ethan Reggia, provided training and support to students and teaching fellows for this pilot 3D printing integration. With one of their instructors, they presented a paper on the curriculum integration to the American Society of Engineering Education this fall.
Now that 1,200 Maryland students are getting 3D printing experience each year, the school opened a MakerBot Innovation Center, with more than 50 MakerBot Replicator 3D printers. The MakerBot Innovation Center, where Albrecht and Reggia work as lab managers, sits next to a Rapid Prototyping Lab with a Fortus 400mc and an Objet30. Using these Stratasys 3D printers, students can produce more refined and versatile models made from more robust materials. For example, Albrecht and Reggia made a presentation model on the Objet30 for the final project in an upper-level engineering course.
With Maryland’s two 3D printing labs, students can take their projects from rough concepts to sophisticated prototypes and beyond, since the labs have been located next to a student-run coworking space and incubator, the Startup Shell, which has produced more than 50 business ideas in its first three years of operation. And the MakerBot Innovation Center is open to all Maryland students, not just engineers. “Part of the mantra of the University of Maryland is to have innovation and creativity come from anywhere,” says Pines.
“Students today are thinking, could they be the next Google? the next Facebook? It’s good to have that dream and we want them to dream more,” he adds. “We are just giving them the tools to make them successful.”
The Snowflake Machine uses random numbers, mathematical algorithms, computer code, and SCIENCE to create well over a billion unique and beautiful snowflakes.
But all you have to do is click a button! Press "Open in Customizer" to get started.
If you 3D print a snowflake from this model, please t…