Moving Into A World Of "Immediate Obsolescence"

On any one day you will read on some blog, website or technology posting that another new smart phone, tablet, medical device, super nanotechnique or chemical compound has been developed. This would be interesting except for the fact that these new advances seem to happen almost every day. Not every month or every year, but every day. 

We here at EIC have been following nanotechnology, OLED technology and 3D Printing, with three printers in operation and one more coming next month, we find new data on any one of these technologies almost daily. How can that be? Perhaps it is because new advancements beget new advancements which beget another new advancements. With the speed of information surpassing the speed of light it is entirely possible to develop a product that replaces itself on a weekly basis.

This speed of obsolescence is very disturbing to some of the older generation but not the millennials. They adapt to technolgy as quickly as skiers adapt to changes in the ski slope and they don't really mind it at all. This quick adapt and die attitude makes it very difficult for some companies to develop a foot-hold in the market when developing a new product or concept. If the demographic targets don't adapt to the technology quickly the possibility they won't adapt at all is frightening.

EIC has two 3D Printers which are manufactured by some of the more well-known printer companies. These units are 1.5 years and 2 months old respectively. Yet, in looking at the number of 3D Printer manufacturers around the world there are now over 100 different styles, types, design capacities with different levels of expertise required. Prices now range from $399.00 to over $4,000.00 and every one is aiming at the home owners and youth market.

Compettion is always good for the consumer as long as one can still get parts and materials for the unit you purchased just zix months ago. Obviously not all of these companies will still be in business 2 or 3 years from now, especially since many of these 3D Printer companes are Kickstarter operations. Our suggestion is to stick with U.S. based 3D Printer manufacturers and those that have been in business at least 3 years. 

Amazon has now jumped into the smart phone market because they can. With their marketing power they have made huge advancements in the tablet market, one that Apple had sown up just a few years ago. Now there are 10 different tablets on the market, many of which actually are just as good if not better than the iPad. Do we need another smart phone? How much more can we do with phones that we don't do now? 

One of our new programs is to start teaching students and interested adults in the use of some of the new 3D modeling software. This is important as now almost everything that is produced is now first created on a computer using 3D software. Even this software is begging to be altered so that almost anyone that understands Microsoft Word can now design and create something amazing on a computer screen.  Perhaps next time you read one of our blogs it will be on a wrap-around your wrist flexible OLED computer screen. Don't blink.

 

Open House - May 28th

Open House FlyerYou are invited to attend our Open House, 3D Equipment Demonstration & Fundraiser at the Englewood Chamber on Wednesday, May 28th from 5:00 PM to 7:30 PM. Light food & drinks will be served.

For more information, click on the flyer on the left side, call us at 317-796-7617 or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

3 D Printing - Dynamic, Distruptive, Divisive

For the novice, the use of 3D Printers is a relatively new technology. However, this technology has been around for almost 25 years. The new advances in materials, printing extruders and motor technology have advanced these systems to the level of the "New Age of Manufacturing." 

3D Printers are now capable of printing in plastic, metals, wood, chocolate, ceramic, glass, human tissue cells, carbon fiber and more. Where this was once the property of the hobbyist, engineering student and prototyping laboratory, 3D Printers have now become the must have new "toy" by the younger generation. 

With prices for some of the newer 3D Printers under $1,000.00, the ability for the average individual to purchase and build models and components is now a reality. 

EIC currently has one of the fifth generation MakerBot Replicator 3D Printers. This unit was just made available as of March of this year and it has proven to be an excellent printer. This unit prints in PLA plastic only ( corn based oil filament ) and has a build platform that is little over 9" square and 6" high. This will print in over 20 colors and the cost of the filaments run from $18.00 to $65.00 depending upon the type and size of the spool.

To enhance our operation, EIC is also getting ready to purchase a new 3D Systems CubeX, dual head printer that prints in both ABS and PLA plastics. In addition, the new Cube3 unit will be added come this June. This is a junior unit to the CubeX but is more portable and better able to be used in multiple locations.

In order to print on the 3D Printers one must have a 3 dimensional digital object file to install on the Firmware of the printers. This file is developed by using any number of 3D software programs and there are also a large number of items you can download from various sites on the internet.

EIC is now putting into place training programs to educate individuals how to build, design and modify any object using some the more intuitive software now available to the public. The intent is to educate students starting at the Middle School level, along with their teachers and have them develop the computer design skills that will be necessary for them to enter the new "manufacturing technology" arena.

A series of classes will be developed that are designed for the adult and business person who wants to learn a new "employable" skill and have fun doing it. Look for more information about this program on our website soon. For more information please contact us at: http://englewoodincubationcenter.org

Disruptive Technology

Innovation often comes when new technologies are applied to existing products or processes which can "disrupt" the current technology and design and morph the existing product into something new and exciting. Steve Jobs wanted to develop the iPhone years before the technology was availble to make it happen. He knew that with the speed of innovation the technologies to make the iPhone a reality would soon be available. 

It is said that technology is now doubling every two years and that products we purchase and use in the next 18 to 24 months have not even been developed yet. Sounds fantastic, but it is true. New advances in design, materials and extraordinary technologies are forever altering the way we look at product development.

Recently, EIC purchased a new 3D Digitizer and 3D Printer to help entrepreneurs and our business candidates quickly move from drawing board concept to prototyping of the product idea in less than 2 weeks, in most cases. Visualizing a product, component or object is one thing, being able to physcially hold it in your hands is another.

One of the real challenges with entering the product design and production business is the barriers to entry. Developing and making an App or software package requires someone able to write html code and a fast T1 line in their house. Two people and very little cost go into this type of product. Producing games requires a lttle more "computer power" but again this can be done from your basement or a space in the garage.

Buidling something means to have to physically "design, develop, prototype, materials selection, manufacture and distribute" your way to an end result. A lot more time consuming and certainly much, much more expensive than just producing a App for a smart phone. Perhaps this is why so many talented, young entrepreneurs look to the social media avenue and soft product ( food, clothing ) arenas rather than hard technologies as their ultimate business goals.

We recognize this challenge and it is for this reason that we have developed a program to utilize the latest "disruptive technology" tools to both simplify and minimize the developmental costs in producing a new product design. As with any new business concept, the product idea itself will not guarantee success. It also requires a great business plan that emphasises the marketing, distribution and pro forma operations to ensure that the idea, concept or new product makes sense and has some potential for success.

For those individuals who have an idea for a new product or redesign of an existing product or technology we encourage you to contact us and provide us with an outline of your business plan. We have the ability to quickly ascertain what areas of assistance are needed and what we can do to get you from concept to reality in as short a period of time as possible.

For more information pleae go to our website at: http://englewoodincubationcenter.org or contact us via email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Contact Details

Englewood Incubation Center, Inc.
P.O. Box 465, Englewood, FL. 34295
Phone:  317-796-7617

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Website: www.englewoodincubationcenter.org

 

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