Artisanal Electronics

A thesis on digital fabrication and electronic products

Ponoko: 3d printing and rules for maker businesses

Posted on | November 18, 2010 | No Comments

Ponoko is now offering 3d printing in collaboration with CloudFab. This seems like a useful addition to their services, but less exciting than they built it up to be. It will be interesting to see how they compare with Shapeways. The one year free replacement policy is interesting; I guess they can always just print you another copy.

The ten rules for maker businesses that Chris Anderson wrote during the run-up to Ponoko’s announcement are great. Check them out:

#1 Make a profit.
#2 It takes lots of cash to stay in stock.
#3 Buy smart.
#4 Basic business rules still apply.
#5 You get no leeway for being a maker.
#6 Be as open as you can.
#7 Create a community to support and enhance your products.
#8 Design for manufacturability.
#9 Marketing is your job.
#10 Your second most important relationship is with your package carrier.

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Chronicling the master's thesis of David A. Mellis, a student in the High-Low Tech group at the MIT Media Lab.

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