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Remember being a child and needing to have a popsicle in the shape of Sonic the Hedgehog, or a Clown with the bubblegum nose? – well this MIT invention is meant to take us all back to our youth and get kids excited about computing.


Although, I think it’s safe to say that kids and adults alike are able to get excited about ice cream, unless you have the unfortunate affliction of being lactose intolerant.


MIT students, who either had too much time on their hands or think creating 3D printers is akin to watching Walking Dead on Netflix, created this homemade 3D ice cream printer.

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A test of the finished product. (via MIT)


The picture below shows how these students repurposed household items to become a 3D ice cream printer which has the ability to create some fun and tasty shapes. Who could have known that a freezer and Cuisinart soft serve machine could become high tech?. Atlhough, I suppose if you have a liquid nitrogen tank on hand and a solidoodle, anything could be possible in the frozen food 3D printing world.


The soft serve machine and liquid nitrogen tank work together to freeze the ice cream on demand. Then the ice cream is fed into the solidoodle 3D printer as a printing material where it becomes a 3D edible shape. Finally, you can only hope that the freezer is cold enough to keep these treats frozen for long enough to enjoy all the effort.


I would be over the moon if these MIT students create 3D printed funnel cake next and top it with their ice cream creations. It seems that 3D ice cream may just be the first stop for edible printer products, but perhaps not the last. I see a trend on the rise for Michelin star chefs. Or, perhaps the latest cooking robots will be adopting these ideas. However, there are many more effective and less time consuming ways to get the same job done, for instance: walking to the convenient store.


These MIT students are hoping that this invention gets kids excited about computing by appealing to their "tummies."


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A schematic of the 3D ice cream printer




      TAKE element14's EXCLUSIVE, FREE ONLINE COURSE: 3D Printing 101!

Hello all,

We have an update on the Community's first exclusive online course, 3D Printing 101. If you've been following this blog you know that
our professor, Kirk Hausman, 3D Printing for Dummies co-author, has been on the mend from an accident. Consequently, parts 3, 4 and 5 of the course have been cancelled.   Of course, classes 1 and 2 will remain relevant into perpetuity, so if you haven't already follow the participation instructions below to view the first two courses.

How to Participate:


      1) Go to the 3D Printing 101 page.

K    2) Register or log in!

Meet Kirk and get an overview of the class:





     Here are the two courses.


Please let us know if you have any questions!

While some innovators are working on making 3D-printed food, others are hard at work, creating 3D-printed organs and blood vessels. Although they’re not ready just yet, researchers expect to see the day when organ transplants are as easy as pressing “print.”


Imagine the dreadful news that you or a loved one needs an organ transplant, but there are no current donors that are a match. Imagine that stress, worry and fear you might experience, not knowing when and if you’ll receive the organ in time. Now imagine that doctor telling you, “Don’t worry. We have a 3D printer that can print one for you.” Meet the future of 3D printing.


University of Sydney, Stanford, MIT and Harvard researchers came together to find a feasible way to make bio-printed organs. While growing organ tissue is something researchers have been doing since the 1990s, making a functional organ involves making an organ with a network of capillaries. This allows blood to flow through, which gives the organ the fuel it needs to function. For the very first time, researchers discovered a way to print blood vessels, which is a real “game changer.”


The process involves making dissolvable blood vessel fibers using a scientific bio-printer. The blood vessels are then coated with human endothelial cells and a protein mixture. When the contraption is exposed to light, the cells harden around the fibers, making functional, hollow channels that serve as blood vessels.


The idea is that organs will then be grown around the blood vessels, making an organ just as functional as a real one. Since it is made from real human cells and other materials found in natural organs, in time, the body should accept it. Who knows, maybe receiving a bio-printed organ will also decrease the risk that the body will reject the transplant. 


The hope is that the technology can serve those who are waiting for organ transplants that may never come. In a recent study by Anthony Atala reported that more than 78,000 Americans are waiting for organ transplants this year. The problem is that less than 3,500 organs have been donated since January, making the prospect of receiving an organ a difficult one.


Researchers are still in the beginning stages of the development, but hope to eventually see a day when full organs can be printed, on demand. It is an arduous process, but certainly worthwhile.


BioPrinting in action below:


3D Printing at BWH from BWH Public Affairs on Vimeo.



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ProjectileIcon Summer Camp Project

The members of Texas A&M University’s AggieSTEM program invited me to bring SOLID Learning elements of 3D printing to their Summer Camps this year. Considering Projects for the classes, as the format will be a Project Based Learning engagement intended to create a useful end product the participants will learn from in other settings after the summer camps are over - I ran across this design in the MAKE magazine. The classes sessions include teachers-only Boot Camp sessions and multiple teenage-participant groups for students in Middle School through High School brackets.

cannon cam opener Summer Camp Project

Last month's MAKE magazine (volume 39) has a cover example of a 3D printed projectile for spud guns that will carry a GoPro camera aloft to capture video from high above the launch area. This GoPro Cannon Cam project seemed an excellent possible project for our summer participants, since the end product be used in later Physics lessons illustrating ballistic behaviors, Mathematics lessons addressing changes in trajectory measured against time of flight, and even Wildlife and Resource Management studies of the area around their schools seen from far overhead.

Components 300x274 Summer Camp Project

To test the time required to build one of these projectiles, students who had not yet left for Summer events printed out components using surplus natural ABS filament from our Project Egg support project earlier this year. I discovered the designer of the Cannon-Cam projectile originally left out the slip rings (2x) from his STL archive on the MAKE magazine site, so I created the missing design item and shared it on Thing-i-verse ( for others who want to build their own projectiles. This was a hit with the students, as they enjoyed the idea that a toy missing parts could just have the replacements created at need with updates and personalization.

  Fins 300x249 Summer Camp Project

After the workshop participants got involved with the smaller pieces like the cut-off brass rods and torsion springs, things went in pretty well. The final design lacks only the GoPro camera and its window protector, and we will build the cannon itself in the weeks ahead! We are still trying to get permission to discharge the projectile on campus grounds and hope the Summer Camp’s sponsors like the project deliverable!

3D printing technology need to be introduced to very young minds for early learning, tinkering, adoption, so todays kids will be turned to tomorrow’s 3d printing professionals. It is very gorgeous to see kids first enthusiastic reaction on using the 3d printer for first time in their home with their favorite gadgets like iphones, ipads.


The Mission Street Manufacturing company targets kids creativity appetite by introducing new Printeer K-12 3D Printer which is already introduced in kickstarter campaign reaching many kids and their parents.


Printeer is a nicely designed 3d printer for kids in mind. The printer dimension is 16X9X12 inches which is equal to 406X229X305mm, which is the perfect compact structure for kids to carry and see the 3d printing in action inside. This printer is only supports PLA which is nontoxic, pleasant smell plastic filament which is good for kids. It comes with easy to change print plates sizes about 150X100X125mm. The most important feature is auto print plate calibration levelling and wifi connectivity.


3D Printeer can be operated and controlled by kids very favorite device iPad. They developed the printing software ipad app to make 3d objects and send commands to 3d print. This is the perfect platform made between physical and digital systems. Many kids are now very fond of digital systems rather than physical ones. Hope this will break the barrier in between in them and increases kids creativity on 3d printing technology.


The fund raisers on their kick starter campaign may get this 3D Printeer for low as $549 if the manufacturer can able to raise $50000 targeted fund budget in kickstarter to start their production. They should work hard to produce each and every machines to comply with rules and does not crosses the children’s safety limits. If this project to be successful, hope they cracked the market of all schools who needs to learn this technology very easier. They have the responsibility not only making easier hardware but also easy to operate user friendly software.


This 3d printer specially designed for classrooms. Think about it, if every class rooms of every schools have this 3d printeer in their desks, the mission street manufacturing’s goal will be easily achieved. Yes undoubtedly this is the 3d printer made for shaping future generation techies.




Christophe Vidal’s artist design named ‘Trixie.’ One of many innovative artists’ designs based on the My Little Pony Hasbro collection available at shapeways (via Christophe Vidal)


Hasbro is initiating a first in toy history by licensing out their intellectual property to artists who wish to create and sell their own innovative twists on Hasbro collections – under the “SuperFanArt” initiative.


A few lucky artist ‘SuperFans’ were already accepted by Hasbro to create and sell their own 3D printed art, inspired by the My Little Pony licensed collection. Most of these fun twists on the original My Little Pony designs are 3D printed and available for purchase on


However – you may hold your breath now – Hasbro is expected to release other IP designs to artists under license agreements. This means that you can be the proud owner or creator of your very own zany Mr. Potato Head, scandalous GI Joe, or even a chain-smoking Oscar the Grouch. These are just my ideas on what I would find hilarious, but now anyone can feel free to rally artists to create their own twists on the classics. Since Christmas is coming, I see a new trend in Christmas stocking gifts on the rise.


The other license collections which could be added soon to the SuperFanArt mix include: G.I. Joe, Sesame Street, Jurassic Park, Mr. Potato Head, Transformers, Tinkertoys, Star Wars, Parker Brothers, Tonka, and Wizards of the Coast.

Pokemon fans are out of luck though, because Hasbro does not own the rights to the 3D printed toy designs. I am pretty bummed about that one. I would definitely buy a Hogwarts inspired Pikachu…after a few whiskeys and a tax refund check,– of course. Right now, the My Little Pony SuperFanArt costs between $49 and $100, which is steep for 3D Printed Toys. But I suppose some people buy paintings at art galleries, and others buy ‘Trixie’ the My Little Pony witch with attitude.


To browse the selection of SuperFanArt available, you can visit Kids win on this one!



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