I recently went to an open house at the revamped Fab Lab located in the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago. Fab Labs were created at MIT and now exist throughout the world. They were designed to allow (almost) anyone to make (almost) anything. The tools they use include; milling machines, laser cutters, CNC routers, 3D printers, and freeware. I was able to participate in one of their shorter 45 minute programs that showed us how to create a key chain in the laser cutter.
Is personal fabrication the future? I believe it is, there is even a new 3D printer that is now ready for space travel. So hopefully I will be helping the next generation learn how to use these new tools. Here is a sneak peek at a program that I am developing for the Fab Lab.
The program will teach a brief tutorial on Google Sketchup and you will get to create something similar with a personal twist. I also used a Sketchup unfold plugin.