LIFE AND TECH WITH ROBERT SCOBLE

Each week, Rackspace futurist Robert Scoble connects with startups and other innovative companies, then makes connections and shares insights in his free, weekly email newsletter, Life and Tech. Below is an excerpt from this week’s offering:

One of my favorite memories was attending the original Maker Faire a decade ago. I’ve been several times since and each time I am inspired by people who make things from small jewelry, to wondrous robots, to amazing pieces of art. This weekend, Maker Faire visits New York, and that’s brought a slew of new product announcements along with it.

3D printers are having their “laser printer moment.”

Remember back in 1986, when Apple showed the world the Laser Writer? A $5,000 printer that changed desktop publishing?

Before today, the sub-$5,000 3D printers produced items that had a crude feel to them, or were hard to use.

Well, this week Formlabs brought us its new Form 2 printer. This printer makes much higher resolution objects than other extrusion-based printers can do. Here, you can see how it’s easier to use, and can make objects with soft and tough materials too.

This is the printer I want to own. It gets rid of the negatives of previous printers.

It isn’t alone this week either. Glowforge showed me a laser cutter that can cut through ¼-inch-thick organic material (wood, plastic, leather, etc.) and can etch metal.

Why are these important? Because so many entrepreneurs rely on them to make prototypes and other products. Watch for them to pop up at future Maker Faires like flies on honey.

If you want to read more about what Scoble sees and does each week, sign up for his weekly newsletter.

He reads all his email — scoble@rackspace.com and says responses to the newsletter go to the top of his inbox. You can find him on Facebook, too. Feel free to reach out to him with tech stories or startup news you find cool and interesting.

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