Like a lot of technology that has completely changed the world, 3D printing is – on the surface – really quite simple. How simple? Well, it’s printing… but in three dimensions.
Okay, okay, I bet you want a bit more information. Really, 3D printing is, in essence, the same as regular old printing but instead of ink on a flat surface the technology uses plastics – and other materials – to build up layer after later until, voila, you have a solid object. Plastic, metal, sugar… you name it and we can, or will very soon, be able to make it.
The revolution in 3D printing came very recently, but the really big change is just on the horizon. That first step was in making 3D printing much more accessible: going from a novelty to an almost common piece of technology. Staples, in fact, recently announced that some of their stores will feature 3D printers; all you need to do is drop off a design, or email it, and your physical object will be made for you.
Then you have the very cool company, Shapeways; people upload their designs to the site and then anyone can order that gizmo or whatever you’ve created in all kinds of materials. For the first time anyone can create pretty much anything and then have people own a physical version of it.
Which gets us to sex. The problem with the old world of sex toys is the same problem with manufacturing, period: bulk. To make anything you had to make a lot of it. Just making one of anything was hideously expensive.
Ah, but not anymore! Now you can create a sex toy to your very exact specifications: size, color, texture, flavor, action… you name it! Add in some body scanning tech (itself just a few years away) and you can have a vibrator or butt plug or BDSM toy customized to your very exact specifications. All with total and complete privacy.
Far off, you think? Pish! A company called SexShop3D is already doing the very thing: upload a design, pick a material and so much more and before you know it there’s your sex toy.
But there’s more: we are beginning to see the first steps towards printing more than just metals and plastics. I’m talking food, for one: creating edible creations that never could have existed before. Foodini is a 3D food printer on the market right now. What this means for kinky fun should be obvious: edible sex toys, anyone? Vibrators that taste like whatever you want them to taste like?
Then we have the much farther future… where things get really out there. Okay, we can print plastics, metal, and food. What’s left? Well, it’s on the tip of your tongue. Actually, it’s what your tongue is made out of: human tissue.
We are already experimenting with using 3D printing technology to create replacement human organs like livers and kidneys and more. Companies like Organovo are already doing it. How much longer before we use the same tech to create (ahem) enhancements to ourselves? If it’s grown from your own DNA there’s no risk of rejection so the sky – and human imagination – could very well be the limit.
Yes, like all groundbreaking tech 3D printing appears pretty simple… and, like all the technology that has altered the world, what we will do with it will be something really wild.
And, best of all, really sexy!