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Makerbot unveils 3D Scanner [SxSW]

3D printing specialist MakerBot today announced the development of a new Digitizer Desktop 3D Scanner prototype at South by Southwest Interactive.

Nur Bremmen: Staff reporter
Nur is an enigma with a passion for creating words. He recently entered a love affair with technology and chorizo sausages. He travels a lot -- you... More

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The MakerBot Digitizer Desktop 3D Scanner adds to MakerBot’s 3D Ecosystem that includes MakerBot Replicator 3D Printers, Thingiverse.com, MakerWare, MakerCare, and the apps inside Thingiverse. The 3D Scanner shown at SXSW is a prototype model and MakerBot will spend time testing, scanning, and printing in 3D the items scanned with it.

“We are super excited to be able to announce at SXSW Interactive that we are developing the MakerBot Digitizer Desktop 3D Scanner,” said Bre Pettis, CEO of MakerBot. “It’s a natural progression for us to create a product that makes 3D printing even easier. With the MakerBot Digitizer, now everyone will be able to scan a physical item, digitize it, and print it in 3D – with little or no design experience.”

MakerBot, the global leader in 3D printing, claims it is the only company to ever announce a physical hardware product at SXSW Interactive.

In that sense, it’s a bit of a homecoming for the company. CEO Bre Pettis announced MakerBot’s first generation 3D printer, the Cupcake CNC desktop 3D printer, four years ago while at SXSW in Austin.

According to Pettis, “The MakerBot Digitizer is an innovative new way to take a physical object, scan it, and create a digital file – without any design, CAD software or 3D modeling experience at all — and then print the item again and again on a MakerBot Replicator 2 or 2X Desktop 3D Printer.”

This technology behind the scanner uses lasers and cameras to replicate physical objects into a digital form and file.

“This is something you would envision being a piece of fiction, but in fact, it is real – and it is so cool,” Pettis added. “The MakerBot Digitizer is a great tool for archiving, prototyping, replicating, and digitizing prototypes, models, parts, artifacts, artwork, sculptures, clay figures, jewelry, etc. If something gets broken, you can print it again.”

MakerBot reckons the MakerBot Digitizer Desktop 3D Scanner will be used in businesses, universities, classrooms, and in the home where anything 3D can be digitized and reproduced at will. Pretty much everywhere except the street then.