3D Printing – My first hands-on

Covestro Booth at the K-Fair

Last week in the Covestro Booth at the K-Fair I had the chance to watch a presentation of Autodesk.

It was about Additive Manufacturing (=3D Printing) and bringing Software, Hardware and Material  together.

Catalogs of materials with all its properties and specifications would be included in the design tool and help designers to choose the right material. Autodesk sees a $B market not only in fancy designs but especially in parts like sealings for cars (in the first step).

3D-Printers will be able to scale for industrial manufacturing at appropriate volumes and costs. With Additive Manufacturing no dies or tools as in traditional machines are needed upfront.

They mentioned a light-weight tool (Tinkercad from Autodesk) that can be used to create (not only) simple Objects in the Browser.

When done you can send the result directly to one of many 3D-printing providers with a few clicks. You can choose the material and order it. It will be printed within days or even hours.

You can also download the model and print it yourself!

Out of curiosity I created and ordered a small object of about 5x5x5cm that in the meantime was made of ABS for a few Euros. If have to admit: in this I am a member of the late majority.

My first 3D-Printed Object
My first 3D-Printed Object. It throws my initials (“B.E.O.”) as shadows when lit from different angles.

With tools like this it is easy to create 3D-Objects and Prints without any expert knowledge and any special equipment.

Why not print spare parts for your household appliances? Some simply shaped ones in my car and my kitchen appliances, I had to replace recently, come to my mind.

I remember once having to replace “almost” a complete car door, because a broken plastics part in the electrical window regulator was not separately available for order :-)

With a 3D capture app (like the coming  Windows Capture 3D) the last hurdle of having to create a model first will disappear.

Where will it lead us to when people start to print their own parts and exchange self-made models that are good enough for a certain purpose? Will the material get as expensive as ink cartridges for paper printers are now? Will there be charge on it like there is for rewritable storage media?

Will business models based on the short life-cycle of products or their parts disappear?

We will see. At least I have got a nice and solid Pencil Holder on my desk now.

My new Job

Thanks for the congrats and likes in the Social Media. For those who asked or wondered:

De facto starting in September I’ll be globally responsible for IT Innovation in my company.

There were also some more important announcements this week in the Internet about the fact that there will be a major reorganization of Bayer.

Perhaps have you seen the announcements (www.bayer.de/en/covestro.aspx): Bayer decided to concentrate on Life Sciences and to spin us (MaterialScience) off. Our new company is called Covestro.

And the „Co“ stands for… TaDa … Collaboration! Which of course has a more generic meaning but makes me very proud anyway.

In 2009 I started promoting Social Collaboration as a one-man-show.  Now, with our Social Strategy we have many ambassadors and a network of Change Agents that work decentralized with the users in their area.

The other measures of the strategy (Profile Days, Promoting Lighthouses, Communication, Reverse Mentoring, Increase Accessibility, Executive Ambassadors…) have led to the situation that Social gets more and more settled, adoption has reached a critical mass and is running and growing on its own.

Our social KPIs are steadily increasing from the beginning.

This was a good point in time for me to take over a new challenge, though I’ll never give up to support and promote Social and I will also utilize it for my new job and look at it from the IT Innovation perspective. Social Collaboration underlies maybe even more than other areas the need to continuously innovate and renew. The borders between internal and external will continue to weaken over time and a high demand for IT Innovation will occur.

At Bayer I already was MaterialScience’s chairman in the group-wide Innovation Committee.

Now we can build our own IT Innovation Organization, which amongst other topics will be tailored to the specific requirements of our business.

Regardless where you (will) work at Covestro, the times are very exciting now. There are many opportunities to reshape things, challenge the status quo and proceed in an agile way.

I’m looking forward and counting the days until September, 1!

The journey has begun.

Do you know the difference between an introverted and an extroverted IT guy?

==> The extroverted one looks at YOUR shoes while talking to you.

But seriously, this might help to understand each others better:

Do You Know What It Means To Be An Introvert?

Oct. 26, 2013

By Kate Bartolotta info

As someone who works with people all the time, you’d think I’d be an extrovert. I’m friendly. I’m not shy. But when I get close to my “people time” limit, it’s time to shut down, be quiet and hole up with a good book. I love helping people, but there’s a huge reason that I balance that type of work with work where I get to be quiet and dive in to working with words instead of being bombarded with interaction. Read on