Put simply, the MakerBot Thing-O-Matic is a thing you can make to make your own things – automatically.
On show at CES 2011, it is a desktop 3D printer that comes in kit form and, once assembled, can then be plugged into a PC via USB to print 3D objects from your own 3D digital designs. While you won’t be able to print your own car or your own replacement organs, you will be able to churn out everything from a customized plastic chess set to an action figure of yourself.
The kit comes with v2.0 of MakerBot’s Automated Build Platform that lets users set up a print queue of multiple or a variety of objects, with the machine automatically clearing the build surface between builds and ejecting the completed object before moving onto the next job. In addition to the USB connection, jobs can also be printed from an SD card.