I'm currently printing out a seal of the Inquisition from the warhammer 40K universe.Something I would have had to painstakingly rebuild from various materials a year ago. now I listen to the sounds of my 3d printer and check the process every half hour. all I had to do was download the model from the internet and copy it to an SD card. I inserted the card with the data into the 3d printer and started the production process.
There are a lot of technical developments that have surprised me in recent years: the Internet, the computer, the smartphone or virtual realities. Some developments are so fast that I can almost no longer follow. Nevertheless there are some things that are still a long way off. Temporary manipulations, people who can live forever, regrowing organs, finally intelligent artificial intelligences or people who have almost completely left behind the transition phase from cyborg to a new human being. Even the replicator mentioned in the science fiction series Star Trek still seems to be a long time coming. Nevertheless, a 3D printer is already quite a good approximation.
You can now print sand, food, cells and organs, homes or other things, but most of it is still >plastic, so it's almost a real replicator. When something breaks in my apartment, I look to see if the file is available on the Internet. If not, I build it myself and can fix my problem within a day. I only need electricity, filament and time. the machine does the rest, just like on the Enterprise. the future is closer than we can imagine, because production processes are no longer limited to companies, factories or design studios.
I don't like a component or the design is impractical. I change it, mix old with new design. A technical evolution within my small apartment. Rules can be new or rewritten. Modifications, models, components, prototypes are within my reach. My creativity turns into a constant flow of ideas and improvements. The 3D printer is a miniature factory for model makers, designers and inventors. "Ring! Ring! Who's there?" Oh, China called. They want their factories back.
Of course, this is only worthwhile on a small scale, but if you look at the videos of industrial designers, makers and tabletop gamers, the technical revolution is in full swing. Even if you can't produce everything yet, production processes can be optimized in terms of time if, for example, you can print out a prototype within an hour and send it to the customer. Something that took weeks in the 90's has been reduced to a few days. The future is coming so fast and every day creative people are pushing new ideas into the digital ether. These will eventually lead to us getting replicators. We just have to see how we can recycle all the other garbage so it can be used to print new products.
And that is also one of the negative effects of this new technology. More plastic. More and more plastic is being printed out and thrown back in the trash. What works so easily can do so much harm to the environment, because when we design, we now don't look at the durability of an object, but only how fast it can be printed. Fast. Faster. Fastest. Components that were previously milled in steel are being replaced with the cheap plastic, and unfortunately, with that, you also replace durability. Also, what can be printed is a problem because when people start printing out guns and components for guns, they are removing themselves from the visibility of a government and the security forces.
Where is the limit? Where is the bearable? It's not all toys that come out of the printer. If 3D printers can start printing other materials like metal or cells. Who then decides if I print out an artificial heart and have it illegally implanted? What about a right to design when I can copy anything? Will there be then also sometime filament, which can be traced, just as now already paper from a simple printer. A copy protection that a printer can not print certain objects? There are still many points to be discussed in the future, but the baby has already been thrown out with the bathwater. The future will show how things will develop, but a big step towards home automation has already been taken. Now I have to stop, because the first print is done and I have to send the second model into the production process. The future. I'm printing it out right now with my 3D printer.
I hired my first employee on 10/25/2021. As always when you hire someone new, you have to find each other first. What can the new employee and what not. How do you set up his work environment so that he feels comfortable. How many materials does he need to do his job? These are all questions that become clear after the trial period and only then can you say whether you want to continue working with your employees. Ender is a good boy, works to his limits every day and doesn't cause any problems. So far he has never called in sick (despite the Covid-19 pandemic) or had to take a day off. The price of hiring and also converting the store was high, but in the end it paid off. My first employee is my best horse in the barn, highly professional and flexible. He is my employee of the month and I am very proud of him. I don't think I will ever hire a real human in my company in the future.
Ok, I have reached a little into the future here, because neither I have a company nor a startup. So far I'm working alone and as you can see I'm excited about my first 3D printer. It runs every day and I have 113 3D printing projects in my queue. From small repairs, upgrades, Christmas gifts for my roommates, product design prototypes and parts for my model making projects. I find so quickly that I can recreate in software to print out. There are so many reasons why the 3D printer has been a good investment. I save time. So much time that I can update my website almost every day, because I don't need to control a 3D printer. Of course, it took me almost a month to understand all the tricks of the trade, but now I have a certain routine that I can work with.
From the technical side I have learned a lot and learn something new every day. For example, that a mirror is straighter than the default bed and you can also use children's glue if you want to hold objects to the bed. I also learned that you can optimize almost everything yourself. 3D printers remind me of the early desktop computer days, where every teenager came up with their own ideas, mods and improvements. The 3D printing scene is incredibly creative and every day you see new ideas on YouTube on how to make working with a 3D printer easier. This is incredibly exciting and I am also currently working on a larger project to optimize filament recycling. 3D printing is still underestimated by the industry, because when I look at the mini scene I see massive changes. With a Resign printer you can now print your own minis at home. Just sign up for a monthly subscription with one of the hundreds of suppliers and never again order anything from an online store. No planes loaded with packages destroying the environment, no packaging material. Many advantages. And even the argument that you produce more plastic waste because you can now print everything will not apply in the future, because the recycling scene is almost as big as the people who deal with 3D printers.
But especially the Ender 3 has its limits, because I can't print minis for tabletop games. Also other small objects are difficult. The resolution is too small and I have to save up for a resign printer in the future. But this is feasible and the prices drop faster than my beard hairs grow back. 200$ for this model is ridiculously cheap and I am glad to have made such a good investment decision. I have a few tech devices here but none have excited me as much as the Ender 3 printer. The only problem I have to solve is the noise pollution. So far I have found a solution with soundproof headphones, but this does not work in the long run. But since I love problems, because my brain thinks it's super exciting puzzles, at least I won't get bored in the next few months.
 There are tricks that I have developed over the years in which I work on projects and can also transfer to other machines. The yellow line on the PLA roll shows me that this roll also rotates and the feeder (which lies in the dead angle to my desk) is functional. In the beginning, I had the problem of not having the feeder set correctly and then always had to get up when it wasn't feeding the filament into the 3D printer. The date signals me when I have inserted the roll. On average, my printer prints every day. When a roll is empty, I can estimate how long a roll will last and then buy a year's supply of PLA rolls. This saves me from having to keep ordering from online stores. These are just two little tricks that can make your workday a lot easier.
 Seriously, I can't understand why Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos could become so rich with all the people they employ. I think you should put the cart before the horse and develop production processes without humans. I am for a full automation of the complete working world, so that people have more free time to work on creative projects. I am also for a citizen's income, so that people no longer have to work but that's a whole other topic on which I will go into more detail in the future. Robots, software and machines do repetitive work better than a human ever could. As an Asperger's autistic, computer scientist and inventor, I can't understand how people can work just to earn money. This is grotesque. Every superfluous component must be taken out of a work process, even if it is people. But since people cannot live without money, alternatives must be created at the same time.