What technologies like 3D printers and small scale tooling systems is allowing is individuals to create small scale manufacturing inside their own homes. So instead of the large scale companies that arose during and post industrialization, we’re going to see more and more small scale manufacturers such as these two guys who make chef’s knives from abandoned scrap metal.
While the Post WWII market demanded large quantities (everyone should have two cars, a laundry machine, dryer, etc.), the current market demands individualized and personal goods. Ten years ago, this was a luxury only the very rich could afford. But technologies like 3D printing, littleBits, and more will allow almost anyone to create a hardware or electronics company with a few hundred dollars.
What I’m trying to say is:
- More people want individualized items. This means consumer demand is shifting towards small scale production. So instead of producing 50,000 of the same cars, we’ll see productions of 1,000 cars or less.
- Traditionally, small scale production is very expensive (think Porsche, Aston Martin, Hermes Birkins, etc. where only a few are made per year), new technology such as 3D printers and more will reduce the price of small scale production, therefore allowing people to have more individualized, unique items.
- There will be more mom and pop (small) businesses
- People will have more unique, personalized items
- Demand is driving the invention of technologies like 3D printers