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ht_th 526 days ago | link | parent

Not given our current way of life, indeed. Then again, our current way of life is based on the premise that things take time, effort, money, transport, and so on to get into our homes. But why would I need clothes, extra chairs, tableware, tools, and the like if I could just print them when I need them? What if it would become more economical to print common objects instead of having durable items? I would argue that there currently isn't a need because we organised around the idea of durability.

An interesting example in this discussion: Why do a lot of fast-food restaurants use disposable tableware and coffee shops disposable cups? Disposable cups don't make sense if it is impossible to make disposable cups that cost nigh to nothing. If you want to take coffee on the road, just stop at a restaurant, or take a thermos can from home. There is just no need for anyone to have disposable cups, that's just wasteful.

Once these cups became a possibility, however, the use-case of a coffee to go became reality. And with some interesting changes bubbling through society to boot, I think. Compare train stations of a century ago with train stations of today, for example. Or canteens in many a factory with those of 50 years ago. Or your office: where has the coffee lady gone?




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