According to CEO of Shapeways Peter Weijmarshausen in this personalized manufacturing keynote, 3D printing is changing the roles of consumers. The introduction of mass production was to lower the price of goods, yet as Weijmarshausen points out the downside of this is a loss of individualization. However, in a time when most goods are purchasable by consumers, products begin to become indistinguishable from each other.
This leads to a dissatisfaction in the products, but custom-made products are often associated with being too expensive or unattainable. Weijmarshausen states that the solution is in 3D printing. Some of the things that are possible are jewelry, houseware and games, and as time progresses there will be endless capabilities. Three dimensional printing allows for such customization, and is transforming the relationship between products, creators and consumers.
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