SolveHard(ware)ProblemsNick Pinkston@nickpinkstonThursday, April 25, 2013
Nick’s ProjectsThursday, April 25, 2013
• Get space creatively• Behind every hackerspace is a cool landlord• Get members first, get them to pay up• Be open to the ...
• Started as distributed fabbing marketplace• Don’t do this...• Then automated 3D printing• Then injection mold quoting so...
16 Meetups4694 MembersThursday, April 25, 2013
Thursday, April 25, 2013
DFM Plug-ins Full-auto FactoryThursday, April 25, 2013
Why Hardware Startups?• Real Problems: Food, water, shelter,medicine... We can’t solve these byjust adding software - new ...
First Startup Dec 2011 March 2012 July 2012 -LocationSanFranciscoShenzhenChinaSanFranciscoBostonStartups 9 9 1(?) 0Service...
Hardware Startup Services*No one knows why the “Street” trope happened...Thursday, April 25, 2013
Mfg: Now and Then•Mass Production:• Unit Cost, Scalability• Mass Customization is overhyped•Small-Run, Flexible Production...
Digital Manufacturing isthe Real Movement• 3DP is currently overhyped, but it is greatfor prototyping and as a Gateway Dru...
Nothing is ever Democratized“Good, Fast, Cheap - pick two”- Engineering MaximComputers?Are datacenters just abunch of MacB...
Manufacturing Physics• Feature formation efficiency (x = speed)• Molding is x^3, SLS = x^2, FDM = x• Material Compatibility...
Manufacturers don’t wantyour help• Still focused on big players and mass production• Don’t make their own software / elect...
Engineering ConservatismSoftwareEngineering(minutes)ElectricalEngineering(days)MechanicalEngineering(weeks)CivilEngineerin...
Vertical is Back• Who: SpaceX,Tesla,Apple, Makerbot,3D Robotics, OpenROV, etc.• HybridVertical & Core Competencies• Hyunda...
Distributed Productionis a CanardDistributed / Democratized Prototyping is RealThursday, April 25, 2013
Machine cost doesn’t matter• Machine vs. Unit vs. Setup Cost• Facebook is capital intensive:• $1.8B Datacenter + $53M/YR e...
The Robot WarsBaxter RobotMasterThursday, April 25, 2013
Economies of Scalein the FutureInfrastructureCommunityThursday, April 25, 2013
MechE ToolsThursday, April 25, 2013
EE ToolsThursday, April 25, 2013
What should CAD really give you?• Simulation• DFM - Design for Manufacturability• Data Interchange and Part Libraries• Mec...
Open Source?• Open Hardware: Going through aStallman moment...• Makerbot, Chris Anderson, OpenROV...•Software:• Open is ha...
Maker Cities• Cities are gaining power relative to Feds• Our current capitalism has issues withlong-term outlooks and +/- ...
A Brief History of Maker Cities• Robert Owen (Textiles) -> New Harmony, IN• F.C. Lowell (Textiles) -> Lowell, MA• Henry Fo...
Current Maker Cities• Open Source Ecology’s Factor-eFarm• Shenzhen• “Pro” Hackerspaces• Artisans Asylum (Somerville, MA)• ...
A Deficit of Meaning• Contemporary Western Society: sans unraison d’etre.• Current Post-Modernism & “Hipsters” aresymptoms ...
Education is the UltimateCompetitive Advantage• Net Productivity must be greater thansurroundings in the long-term.• If yo...
A New Capitalism• Market Failure: Value Creation withoutValue Capture• Financial Models: Kickstarter?• Capitalism Outside;...
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Talk at Institute for the Future

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I gave a talk at Institute for the Future about my work in digital manufacturing and hardware startups + they wanted me to talk about what I though of "Maker Cities"

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Talk at Institute for the Future

  1. 1. SolveHard(ware)ProblemsNick Pinkston@nickpinkstonThursday, April 25, 2013
  2. 2. Nick’s ProjectsThursday, April 25, 2013
  3. 3. • Get space creatively• Behind every hackerspace is a cool landlord• Get members first, get them to pay up• Be open to the community, open shopThursday, April 25, 2013
  4. 4. • Started as distributed fabbing marketplace• Don’t do this...• Then automated 3D printing• Then injection mold quoting softwareThursday, April 25, 2013
  5. 5. 16 Meetups4694 MembersThursday, April 25, 2013
  6. 6. Thursday, April 25, 2013
  7. 7. DFM Plug-ins Full-auto FactoryThursday, April 25, 2013
  8. 8. Why Hardware Startups?• Real Problems: Food, water, shelter,medicine... We can’t solve these byjust adding software - new machinesand devices need to be made.• Big Companies aren’t moving fastenough - we need startups to solve thesehardware problems faster and more widely.Thursday, April 25, 2013
  9. 9. First Startup Dec 2011 March 2012 July 2012 -LocationSanFranciscoShenzhenChinaSanFranciscoBostonStartups 9 9 1(?) 0Services- Mentors- Workspace- Mfg. Resources- Mentors- Space- Near Shenzhensupply base- Seeed Studio- Mentors- Full Proto Shop- PCH Mfg.Resources- Mentors- Full Proto Shop- Dragon Inno.Mfg. ResourcesFunding Funds: $25-100K- Equity: 3-10%Funds: $25K- Equity: 6-10%Funds: ?- Equity: ?- Licensing Model?Funds: ?- Equity: ?- Licensing ModelHardware AcceleratorsThursday, April 25, 2013
  10. 10. Hardware Startup Services*No one knows why the “Street” trope happened...Thursday, April 25, 2013
  11. 11. Mfg: Now and Then•Mass Production:• Unit Cost, Scalability• Mass Customization is overhyped•Small-Run, Flexible Production:• Setup Cost, SpeedManufacturers are stuck in a mass production mindsetThursday, April 25, 2013
  12. 12. Digital Manufacturing isthe Real Movement• 3DP is currently overhyped, but it is greatfor prototyping and as a Gateway Drug• Prototyping is close to solved• Production is the real problemThursday, April 25, 2013
  13. 13. Nothing is ever Democratized“Good, Fast, Cheap - pick two”- Engineering MaximComputers?Are datacenters just abunch of MacBooks?Printers?Why does Print-on-Demand exist?Thursday, April 25, 2013
  14. 14. Manufacturing Physics• Feature formation efficiency (x = speed)• Molding is x^3, SLS = x^2, FDM = x• Material Compatibility (melting points, etc.)• Don’t Fight Entropy: melting vs. formingThursday, April 25, 2013
  15. 15. Manufacturers don’t wantyour help• Still focused on big players and mass production• Don’t make their own software / electronics.Allof them are mech. engineers / machinists• “What’s MAKE Magazine?”-Youth coordinator for manufacturing magazineThursday, April 25, 2013
  16. 16. Engineering ConservatismSoftwareEngineering(minutes)ElectricalEngineering(days)MechanicalEngineering(weeks)CivilEngineering(months)Conservatism is driven by iteration time and riskScrewing up(debugging) is howyou have to work.Screwing up is veryexpensive.Don’t do it!One iteration, if itbreaks:“You’re Fired!”It’s going to take afew boards to get itright.Thursday, April 25, 2013
  17. 17. Vertical is Back• Who: SpaceX,Tesla,Apple, Makerbot,3D Robotics, OpenROV, etc.• HybridVertical & Core Competencies• Hyundai built their own steel millThursday, April 25, 2013
  18. 18. Distributed Productionis a CanardDistributed / Democratized Prototyping is RealThursday, April 25, 2013
  19. 19. Machine cost doesn’t matter• Machine vs. Unit vs. Setup Cost• Facebook is capital intensive:• $1.8B Datacenter + $53M/YR electricity• $1.5B 2012 RevenueThursday, April 25, 2013
  20. 20. The Robot WarsBaxter RobotMasterThursday, April 25, 2013
  21. 21. Economies of Scalein the FutureInfrastructureCommunityThursday, April 25, 2013
  22. 22. MechE ToolsThursday, April 25, 2013
  23. 23. EE ToolsThursday, April 25, 2013
  24. 24. What should CAD really give you?• Simulation• DFM - Design for Manufacturability• Data Interchange and Part Libraries• MechE + EE• Collaboration• Problem:We need more bandwidth!Engineering SuperpowersThursday, April 25, 2013
  25. 25. Open Source?• Open Hardware: Going through aStallman moment...• Makerbot, Chris Anderson, OpenROV...•Software:• Open is hard when Users ≠ Developers:• FreeCAD, GIMP, Calibre, etc... suckThursday, April 25, 2013
  26. 26. Maker Cities• Cities are gaining power relative to Feds• Our current capitalism has issues withlong-term outlooks and +/- externalities• Education is the ultimate competitive adv.Thursday, April 25, 2013
  27. 27. A Brief History of Maker Cities• Robert Owen (Textiles) -> New Harmony, IN• F.C. Lowell (Textiles) -> Lowell, MA• Henry Ford (Cars) -> Fordlandia, BrazilTrope: Industrialist -> Factory UtopiaHonorable Mention: J.A. Etzler & “New Eden” (1833)“The paradise within the reach of all men, without labour, by powers of nature and machinery”Thursday, April 25, 2013
  28. 28. Current Maker Cities• Open Source Ecology’s Factor-eFarm• Shenzhen• “Pro” Hackerspaces• Artisans Asylum (Somerville, MA)• New Lab (coming soon to Brooklyn)• Berkeley Makerspace (coming soon)Thursday, April 25, 2013
  29. 29. A Deficit of Meaning• Contemporary Western Society: sans unraison d’etre.• Current Post-Modernism & “Hipsters” aresymptoms of the disease.• MakerFaire is the new “Big Tent Revival”and is the only fully-rounded, future-facingmovement.Thursday, April 25, 2013
  30. 30. Education is the UltimateCompetitive Advantage• Net Productivity must be greater thansurroundings in the long-term.• If you really believe in liberal values, youalready agree with the above statement.• San Francisco has no yuppie families withschool-aged kids because of bad schools.Thursday, April 25, 2013
  31. 31. A New Capitalism• Market Failure: Value Creation withoutValue Capture• Financial Models: Kickstarter?• Capitalism Outside; Socialism Inside• Cell Wall Model of Economy• Government OSThursday, April 25, 2013

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