The first instance of digital fabrication was first emerged in 1952 and technologies such as 3D printing emerged at the 80’s. Nevertheless, today, a few years later we converge into the point when it is characterised by many as the ‘third digital revolution’ and/or ‘fourth industrial revolution’. What is this value that differentiates our time? The open source initiative re-established the wide access of the machines used in digital fabrication and transformed them from sophisticated machines into household appliances. Meanwhile the free-flow of knowledge and information has established a new form of communication between people, who collaboratively develop and transform the tool. The dynamism of this new tool is in the hands of its users and the way the see fit to use it.
We are at a point when for the first time after the industrial revolution the way we see the machine is being transformed and it is now characterised as a tool for the craftsman. The machine, the one that was the enemy of the industry and displaced humans from fabrication, it is now the one that re-establishes the model of the craftsman dynamically and makes it competitive towards the typical large scale industrial fabrication.
The new tools present a new series of capabilities and in parallel, a variety of constraints. Though this can give a new dynamism, where the endless characteristics of the 3D printer can present new opportunities of creative expression.
This dissertation presents a research of the tool of 3D printing and especially, the printers that work through material deposition. It is presenting the research of the relationship of the digital community and the dynamism that such a community offers to the development of the tool. It is presenting the opportunities that the tool offers and the constraints it sets. Through different examples it is outlined its current development. The probable heretic use toward a new creative freedom, is studied through a series of trials with the goal of producing a rudimentary vocabulary of heretic use.
The 3D printer is an unfinished tool with many possible paths of evolution, it’s gives us though in the meantime the capability to speak of a new type of craftsman, the digital craftsman. The craftsman that manipulates the tools that translates information into matter and can manipulate with multiple ways in order to produce multiple results and collaborate to improve towards its own need or the community’s benefits.