GTA Technology Topics, Tips and Tricks: Last GTA 4T Email & 3D Printing

This will be the last GTA Technology Topics, Tips and Tricks post on The Modern MLIS, as my placement as Graduate Technical Assistant at the School of Library and Information Studies at the University of Alberta is finished.
I think its fitting the last GTA 4T email focus on what’s on the horizon technology-wise. It seems some new technology is announced on a daily, so I am only going to focus on one – 3D printing! For a good report reviewing technologies on the horizon and in the next 3 to 5 years, I suggest looking at the 2012 Horizon Report from EDUCAUSE.
3D printing has fascinated me since I saw a post on Mashable in January stating that Pirate Bay Wants You to Download Physical Objects Now. I had no clue what the headline meant but reading a bit further I realized that 3D printing using lasers was moving out of the realm of fiction into fact and even into mainstream adoption. Although I’m not going to advocate one download anything from PB, what was interesting about what PB was discussing was that they were creating a new category of object called “physibles” where the user can download a blueprint for printing a 3D object. This brought all kinds of questions to my mind. Will 3D objects be copyrighted or considered of intellectual property value? Should printable 3D objects have no copyright? Because if a 3D blueprint is created in the first place then the intent would be to print a 3D object. Like, am I going to get sued for printing a patented car part! There are all sorts of implications for this new technology and I look forward to participating in the discussion. Links to further your 3D printing knowledge are provided below.
Here is a great paper discussing why 3D Printing Will Change the World.
The Fayetteville Free Library Fabrication Lab: Will Fabrication Labs Make Libraries Useful Again from Gizmodo and 3D Printing: Coming to a Library Near Youfrom SmartPlanet
3D Printing from Explaining The Future – Very tech speak!
Libraries and 3D Printing video from CES 2012. Refers to libraries as “hacker spaces” and “maker spaces.”
My personal favourite – Choc Edge 3D Chocolate Printer – world’s first chocolate printer. 🙂
Maybe “Libraries of the Future” will involve having 3D printer “maker spaces.” Discuss.