If like everyone at Crucible you were horrified at the reckless release of CAD files for 3D printing a gun, then this story might lift your spirits. Michigan Tech has decided to counter the negative impact on 3D printing technology with a life-affirming contest entitled 3D Printers for Peace.
The University is challenging the 3D printing community in an open-ended contest to design things that advance the cause of peace. In their words, they suggest you “ask yourself what Mother Theresa, Martin Luther King, or Gandhi would make if they’d had access to 3D printing” and suggest examples including:
- Low-cost medical devices
- Tools to help pull people out of poverty
- Designs that can reduce racial conflict
- Objects to improve energy efficiency or renewable energy sources to reduce wars over oil
- Tools that would reduce military conflict and spending while making us all safer and more secure
- Things that boost sustainable economic development (e.g. designs for appropriate technology in the developing world to reduce scarcity)
Unfortunately entries are limited to people based in the US, but we thought we’d mention it as we support the idea whole-heartedly.
There’s no doubt that 3D printing is going to be a big part of our future and has the potential to have an extremely positive impact on the world – so let’s focus on the possibility it offers to be used to the betterment of mankind, such as the creation of the replacement hand for the South African boy that received relatively little coverage in comparison to the gun earlier this year.