Philip Chu's avatar image.

Consulting at Technicat LLC. Publishing Fugu Games and HyperBowl.

My name is Philip Chu, general programmer, occasional manager, aspiring author

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  • What sort of forecast do you see for 3D software development and printing?

    As 3D printing goes more mainstream, how do you think the hardware and software developments will progress over the next few years?

    Philip Chu's avatar image.

    Oddly, I haven't heard much about 3D printing, recently, and didn't see anything at CES this year. Maybe I just haven't been paying attention (or it's just been overshadowed by VR), but on the other hand, I'm sure it's here to stay, considering I've seen 3D printers available at Best Buy, and there's a really cool non-profit 3D printing space in my neighborhood called the Fab Lab. The membership is a bit pricey (although not bad compared to a gym membership or cable subscription), so I think the current barrier, if any, is price, and maybe some way to offer it as a service (last year I talked to a startup that was offering in-game printing of, say, your favorite video game characters), since not only is buying a 3D printer a bit of an investment, it still requires some expertise to create anything. And that is where 3D software comes in. It doesn't get as much attention, but I'm really intrigued by 3D sites such as sketchfab.com that allow you to upload and display 3D models (they use WebGL) and I've been doing some work for wordseye.com which allows you to generate 3D scenes using natural language. Years ago I worked on some 3D modelers, including a simple-to-use low-cost product called Nendo (which inspired the open-source Wings), so I would like to see something like that on mobile ( If I was more motivated, I'd be working on that right now...) So perhaps this is wishful thinking, but to answer your question, I foresee advances in user-creation of 3D content, and not just apps that act as 3D scanners.