LAST autumn Cody Wilson, a law student at the University of Texas, leased a Stratasys 3D printer. He wanted to print a gun, and more—he and the group he founded, Defense Distributed, wanted to develop blueprints for 3D printing of guns and gun parts, and distribute those blueprints online. Mr Wilson’s motives are overtly political; he wants to “[expand] a free sphere of action…in contradistinction to a planned regulatory scheme…The file is the message. Anyone can have it, anyone can print it, anyone can use it.”
The President will announce a new proposal for a National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, to build a network of up to fifteen Institutes for Manufacturing Innovation around the country, serving as regional hubs of manufacturing excellence that will help to make our manufacturers more competitive and encourage investment in the United States. The President’s Budget proposes a $1 billion investment to create this new National Network for Manufacturing Innovation.My impression is that these will be research institutes, not material infrastructure. This clearly won't support home-brew manufacturing technology. The Prez emphasizes "small business" support, but does that mean that these institutes will actually focus on their own technological problems, or does it just mean "we will try not to forget about small business"?
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