Friday, December 5, 2008

Computer driven fabrication devices

I was watching an online Apple video about the creation of the latest Macbook yesterday and was quite impressed at the attention to detail and the complete redesigning of the Macbook for a greener world.

As I woke up this morning as a result I found myself thinking about a whole new generation of computer fabricating devices. As most of you know, manuals for almost anything now made on earth can be obtained online and one can print out a manual for almost any device known on earth as needed right now. Taking this a step further I could see a laptop or desktop computer tied directly to a device between 1 foot to 2 foot cube that would contain programable lasers that would be small and capable of burning out a part to almost anything or even inventors fabricating new inventions or even custom made products on the spot in their office or garage.

In this way any part needed could be fabricated at home. All one would need would be a large enough piece of the kind of metal or plastic or wood or whatever one needed to construct that part from scratch. Also, the building laser cutting cube could be as large as one needed in order to fabricate whatever part was needed.

Let me give you an example. Let's say someone on a farm in the Australian outback had a tractor and a part failed. This farmer could through satellite send a signal for the part needed and then receive the signal back from the company authorizing the farmer to burn a new part in his garage. As long as the farmer had the raw metal to construct the part it would be burnt to specifications within an hour or two or more depending upon the complexity of the part. This saves shipping costs and time while the farmer needs to use the tractor and everything works quicker, smoother and more efficiently.

Another example would be an inventor anywhere on earth. This inventor might live high in the Himalayas where there are no roads at all only trails.(I have trekked such places in Nepal). This inventor might first design his newly designed product on his computer that would be solar powered. Then he might turn on his water powered generator from a nearby stream or waterfall to generate enough electricity to power his laser fabricator. After the inventor high in the Himalayas fabricates his newly designed product or part he sends his device to his company in New Delhi so that they can then sell the rights for individuals to fabricate his device or part all over the world transmitted through satellite.

In this way what would be shipped more would be food, cubes of metal to fabricate or plastic or wood and whatever couldn't be fabricated easily at home or work.

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