By , 2012/10/31 – The phenomenon we call the maker movement is characterized by many things, among them the ability to cheaply and quickly prototype hardware. Open hardware principles, collaborative design, and crowd funding are contributing factors, but perhaps the most empowering of all is access to inexpensive, computer-controlled tools and software. If there’s someone who embodies what’s possible with this array of tools, it’s Brook Drumm, founder of Printrbot.

I had spoken several times with Brook, but we hadn’t actually met until the day of MAKE’sHardware Innovation Workshop last year. He was there because we had wanted to feature his 3D printer in our “corral” of maker product innovations. After his record-setting Kickstarter campaign, many of us knew of his product and were anxious to see it in person. However, as I approached his booth, my eyes were drawn toward another smaller printer sitting in the background. After introducing myself, I asked about it.

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