Friday, October 12, 2012

Whither 3D Printers?

By:  E.S., Software Engineer @ G2

Seems as though the market is quietly bring forward more and more 3D printers; as I sit and watch I feel a real trend forming, slowly, one plastic droplet at a time ...
Its sure looking like 3D printing is here to stay, and that its just about to hit the mass market with consumer-level pricing right around the corner.
With all that creativity now possible, and new products and markets that it will create, I can't help to wonder about the security implications that will come along with it. What if it were possible to 'print' a small robot, electrical circuits and all? When you're not home your 3D printer could be hard at work doing a hacker's bidding, printing bot after bot, programmed to deliver the contents of the inside of your house to the waiting moving van the hacker has parked just outside.
How about tiny bots that can be printed without your knowledge, inside your most inner sanctum, complete with high def lens and covert wireless network connection?
Or a swarm of nanobots designed to deliver a payload into a person's body without them knowing?
I wonder what great and and sometimes terrible things humans will come up with when it comes to any technology, especially ones that merge the virtual and physical worlds ...
But for now, we get to print iPhone cases and other things made of plastic, only. Its intruguing technology even at this stage.

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