MakerBot, Partners Endeavor to Put a 3D Printer In Every School
MakerBot, Autodesk, America Makes and DonorsChoose.org are on a mission to put a 3D printer in every school (and maybe kick-start U.S. innovation).Microsoft has said it has a vision that 3D printed objects should be as easy to print as 2D. It's a vision shared by many makers of 3D printers and involves a future in which the presence of 3D printers in households and small businesses is as unordinary as 2D printers or laptops are today. A good place to start on such a vision—as any child of the '80s, who was introduced to computers in a classroom long before one arrived at home, can tell you—is schools. On Nov. 12, MakerBot, partnering with DonorsChoose.org, America Makes and Autodesk—and quoting President Obama's State of the Union comment about 3D printing having the "potential to revolutionize the way we make almost everything"—announced a mission to put a desktop 3D printer in every school in America. As of the announcement, individuals and corporations interested in supporting the project can do so at DonorChoose.org, a crowd-funding site for educators, who can register on the site to receive a MakerBot Academy bundle. Bundles consist of a MakerBot Replicator 2 Desktop 3D printer, three spools of MakerBot PLA Filament (the material used for printing) and a year of the MakerCare service and protection plan. MakerBot also plans to help teachers develop 3D printing curricula and to leverage Autodesk's software and educator curriculum.
MakerBot "is eager to do its part to educate today's students, who are the next generation of innovative makers, engineers, product designers, architects and artists, who could benefit from having 3D printing technology in the classroom," the company said in a statement.