Episode 3: Bre Pettis of Makerbot – Digital Designs Become Real Things

Welcome to 12 to Watch in 2012, a new web series profiling some of New York’s top minds doing innovative things with technology and design.

Meet Bre Pettis, a founder of Makerbot, a Brooklyn-based company that makes machines that make things. Makerbot is a 3-D printer that can turn any design you dream up into a plastic 3-D object, so you can create your own toys, statues, remote control cars, models of locks and keys, anything that you want to see and touch – all from your own design.

The Makerbot community also has a social aspect to it. Once you settle on a design you love, you can share it with the world at Thingaverse.com, and allow other Makerbot owners to reprint your creation. And, if you’re looking for something to create with your Makerbot, you can download the blueprints for previously created objects from the site.

Makerbot uses a type of melted plastic to draw a picture of the object. Then layers on the plastic, drawing layer upon layer until a 3-D object is created. Once enough layers are stacked, a two-dimensional object thought can become a tangible, touchable thing.