In answering this question (Below) about elitism in technology @Ray_Kurzweil2 makes an interesting observation about 3D printing which I thought would interest members of this forum.
Basically Ray Kurzweil alluded to a possible future where 3D printing would make products so cheap as to be practically free.
This comment of Ray Kurzweil’s puzzled me at first because my first hand experience with 3D printing would have me say there’s a long way to go.
Then I realised my experience is very specialised very “Narrow” FFF (Fused Filament Fabrication) which basically means objects are produced from an extruded plastic filament about half millimetre in diameter. in other words the general approach at the moment is top down in other words big machines making small components.
The alternative is “bottom up” where the smallest things make bigger objects. (Nano Tech) my guess is the two will move together and both technologies will enhance each other; after all both technologies are based on information, both are doing practically the same thing but from different ends of the spectrum.
Ray’s predictions sound a bit mad to some people but don’t forget Ray has made a living, a fortune from realising the potential of “exponential development” in science and technology. It is this exponential aspect which has made me re evaluate my first feelings of what appeared to be a rash statement by Ray, me who has read Ray’s book “The Singularity is Near” me who should know better than to doubt him.