The New York Times reports that the costs of three-dimensional printers are steadily declining, and that this decline could continue over the next two years. Three-dimensional printers have been used in industrial settings for about a decade, and typically are used to test parts designs for cars and other products before they are sent for manufacturing. Each machine once cost about $100,000, but now can be had for around $15,000, putting them within the reach of small offices and corner copier stores. These printers assemble objects out of an array of specks of material, similar to how traditional printers use dots of ink or toner. They build models in stack of very thin layers of material–usually powdered plastic or a liquid–which can be hardened by applying heat, light, or chemicals…

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/07/technology/07copy.html?_r=1&ref=technology&oref=slogin

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