The MakerBot and Stratasys Merger There's quite a few negative comments about this here

The MakerBot and Stratasys Merger

There’s quite a few negative comments about this here and elsewhere on the interwebs, but I think it is awesome news. @bre_pettis , @Adrian_Bowyer , and everyone at MakerBot took a huge risk for love and not for money, and it worked out to everyone’s advantage. We should be congratulating and thanking them!

If you don’t like it, start your own 3D printer company and show them how it should be done!

@Rupert_Rawnsley “start your own 3D printer company and show them how it should be done!” – that makes the mistaken assumption that many of us think the end goal should be money. Many of us in the reprap project are already doing exactly what we think should be done…and none of it involves personal gain or requiring a company be made, or abandoning our enthusiastic community for a quick buck.

Did I miss something? I thought Adrian had his own company and didn’t have anything to do with MBI?

@Tony_Olivo He’s an early minority investor in MBI and presumably now a stockholder in Stratasys.

@ThantiK I hear what you are saying, but both approaches can prosper and stimulate one another, as Linux has showed us. I would also point out that as a director of MakerBot, @bre_pettis is compelled by law to make the most money he reasonably can for the company, so you are right that a corporate approach would not suit everyone.

I agree with @ThantiK I only make a profet and a very small one at that becouse I have the time and machinery to do so.

I’m not looking to make a quick buck but I do value my time, and if its to help someone els get started in the comunity I usualy have no problem helping them out for free.

I hope some day I can put back into the community at least a fraction of what this open source community has put out for free. Without the OSH comunity there would be nothing but closed patents and none of what we are doing would be likely to happen.

My only concern about stratasys is what harm if any they will bring to this community

I congratulate @bre_pettis for his financial and business acumen, but I absolutely cannot support the direction Makerbot has taken. It was a flagship Open Hardware company, but as soon as Tangibot put their openness to the test they started down the path of patents, lawyers, and secrecy. Now they are just another commercial 3d printer company, a subsidiary of the largest printer company no less. It wouldn’t be as galling if they hadn’t started out as such an interesting company, but their actions no longer match their revolutionary rhetoric. Money is a powerful motivator. From a businessman’s perspective, this is a great success. From a technologist’s and humanist perspective, this is a sad day.

He seems to be making the same mistakes that Apple computer did against the PC. Closed down, expensive, and less functional than the competition, but aesthetically pleasing and well-marketed. In the meantime the energy and innovation of the maker community will move on to where they can give and take.

I am deeply concerned about the fate of the community built Thingiverse and what plans Stratasys has for those designs. Their TOS gives them a lot of latitude to use them how they see fit, and their shareholders will expect a return on their investment.

I think @Adrian_Bowyer is correct in that this will make the Makerbot an evolutionary dead end. The community will move on to designs that are unencumbered by intellectual property. Cloning is a virtue, not a drawback, and the less you share with others, the less they will share with you. Eventually you will have to do it all yourself. Open collaboration will prevail against any finite group of employees, no matter how talented.

Reporting from Ultimaker. We did, with our own vision on how it should be done. Some people still do not agree to that (as we keep some parts closed so you don’t see cheap clones). If you are more into deeper open-source, then lulzbot is your company to look at.
There are lots of companies out there, with different visions. The one of Makerbot is just copy&marketing.

I do fear for Thingiverse…

@Daid_Braam I understand the reasoning, and since I have nothing at stake, I can’t be certain I wouldn’t do the same in your shoes (or bre’s). However it did influence my recent printer purchase. I evaluated the Ultimaker and I’m quite impressed with your print quality, but went with a Prusa i3 kit because its openness allows me to be independent of any particular vendor.

I understand my criteria are likely different than most people’s and I wish you success. However the clones will be created no matter what secret sauce you claim. If Ford, Sony, and Samsung can’t prevent it, how can a small business?

@Daid_Braam from personal experience I know that the older version is in fact online for grabs. Yes, you wont have the latest version that Ultimaker is selling, but the Ultimaker design itself is open-source. Combine that with some tinkering yourself and you can build your own Ultimaker. Pay a bit more, and you get the latest one from Ultimaker.

I also fear for thingiverse, in the end everything that you put on there will be “property of MBI”. I know that there are alternatives, but people need to made to be aware of them.