COM 473

Information. Materiality. 3Dprinting.

And for the Final Week

We will meet on both Tuesday and Thursday this week.

Tuesday April 28th

  • Read Making is Connecting David Gauntlett pg 115-184
  • Read “Making It”, Evgeny Morozov
  • Keywords: John Ruskin, Maker Movement, Deschooling, Robert Putnam

Thursday April 30th

  • Come to class. Bring all the things you Printed this semester.
  • You should have received an email that allows you to upload your photos to a shared Google Drive.

Final Papers

  • Your final papers are due, via email as a .pdf to me on May 9th at noon. I will email you a confirmation that I received it. If you don’t get a confirmation you might want to follow up.

More Hacking

Tuesday, April 21

  • If you have not already, read Hacker Culture Introduction, Chapter 1 & 2.
  • As Jessica points out you can get the book thru JSTOR as long as you are on the SJU network (logged into the library).
  • Keywords: subculture, War Games, Computer Worm, Hacker Manifesto
  • Bring to class the three “Hacker Profiles” you worked on in class, also write your additional one “Hacker Profile.”
  • Finally you should ask 10 people to describe what it means to be a “Hacker.” Ask them to give you ten words to describe a “hacker” also pick people from different demographic groups.
  • The extra “hacker profile” and answers to the questions you ask 10 people you should add to your reading notes, and print out and bring to class with you.


  • Print anytime during the week 9-4, or Friday morning.
  • Keep in mind that you only have two weeks left of printing.

Final Papers

  • Start working on the rough draft of your final paper. Remember the first draft is due on April 28th in class.

Hacking Things Up


  • Read Hacker Culture Introduction, Chapter 1 & 2.
  • As Jessica points out you can get the book thru JSTOR as long as you are on the SJU network (logged into the library).
  • Keywords: subculture, War Games, Computer Worm, Hacker Manifesto


  • Print anytime next week 9-4, except Friday. Friday is TBA (probably 10-4).
  • Keep in mind that you only have three weeks left of printing.

Final Papers

  • I will hand back annotated bibliographies on Tuesday. In the meantime you want to start working on the rough draft of your final paper. Remember the first draft is due on April 28th in class.

Printing Guns

Tuesday April 7th

  • Reminder your annotated bibliographies are due at the beginning of class.
  • Watch & Read: Click, Print, Gun. Vice. Article & Video. Watch the video and read the article.
  • Watch: The Good Wife Season 6 Episode 15. It is called “Open Source” the first scene has 3d Printing. For class purposes we are interested in the questions about the law suit and 3dprinting (there is extra stuff in here about an election campaign).
  • Keywords: Defense Distributed, Lower Reapter, Liability, Open Source


  • I will be on campus all day Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday so you can get my help anytime during the day that I am not teaching. You can print anytime from 9:00-4:00 during the week.

The 3d Printed Film

Tuesday March 31st

  • Watch: Print the Legend. It’s only available on Netflix so if you don’t have a Netflix subscription you will need to find another student who does.
  • Keywords: Formlab, Stratasys, Bre Pettis, Steve Jobs (just in relation to this movie, why is Jobs important in this movie).

Check This Out

  • One particularly interesting thing you can do with a Printer that we haven’t talked about much is using a Printer to make printed parts to upgrade the printer. So check out this upgrade, this person upgraded their Printrbot (he has the wooden model of the ones you all are using), it is barely recognizable. This thread on Reddit explains what she/he did. You can see on Thingiverse how much people have designed parts to improve their Printrbots. If someone wants to try upgrading one of the printrbots with one of these designs let me know.


  • You can print anytime this week from 9-4, Monday-Thursday.
  • If you want to be sure to catch me in the building (ie you want some directed help doing something challenging/new) I will be around for sure from 10:00am to 4:00 on Monday and Tuesday.

Final Paper

  • Reminder that your annotated bibliography is due on April 7th. If you need it here is the guidelines on the final paper assignment. Keep in mind that you can find an article not directly related to 3dprinting, indeed you probably want to. So for example if you are doing printing and food, an article about how a previous technology (microwaves for example) changed food would be a good idea. This will help you have perspective on how technology interacts with your particular area of interest at a different moment.

IP in a 3D Print World

Tuesday, March 24th

  • Read. “IP in a World Without Scarcity” & Mark Lemley “The Intellectual Property Implications of 3D Printing”
  • Keyowrds: Zero Marginal Cost, Napster (Grokster), Unregistered Design Right, 3DPDF.
  • Note: These are legal journal articles. They read a bit different from other things we have read in class. Don’t worry about digesting all of the footnotes, instead your goal should be to get the overall philosophy of the argument, what are the principles being discussed here.


  • Print something substantial this week and post it to your portfolio.
  • You are free to print anytime you want this week. I will be in Bronstein on Tuesday from 4-6. Wednesday 2:00-6:00. Thursday 11:00-1:30. Thursday 4:00-6:00.

Researched Paper

  • You should be working on your annotated bibliography. I will cover the details in class on Tuesday. It will be due April 7th. So you should be starting your research, looking for academic articles that cover your topic proposal and reading them.

Missing Things


  • Your Midterms are due Tuesday at the beginning of class.

Tuesday, March 17th

  • Read Missing the Point. You should also read the comments. This article is short and even with the comments should not take you very long. You should also briefly look at the comments on the orginal Etsy article as they are instructive.
  • Keywords: Handmade, CNC Mill, Digital Fabrication, Mass Manufactured


  • Starting on Tuesday after class, you can print this week anytime you want that the building is open. That is Monday-Thursday 9:00-4:00. Anytime the building is open you can get myself of Chris (the adminstrative assistant) to let you check one out
  • If you want to make sure that I am around for advice/help you print Tuesday from 4:00-6:00 or Thursday from 11:00-1:45.
  • If you print on Monday or Wednesday from 12-4, Sara Lamachia will be around (she took the class last semester). She can check out a printer for you and help if necessary.
  • After you print you should make sure you upload what you printed to your portfolio.

Before Spring Break


  • If you have not already take this survey do it now. It will only take two minutes and if you don’t you want get the classes you want next semester.

Tuesday March 3rd

  • Read Information Feudalism. Drahos & Braithwaite. Chapters 1-3, 10-11, 14 (This is a lot of reading so start it early)
  • Keywords: Intellectual Property, Piracy, State Granted Monopoly Privelege, TRIPS
  • Bring some of your completed prints to class. For example the iPhone cases, the two color key chains, the gnome. I want to show you all to see what people have been making.

Printing This Week

  • You can sign up here. Note there is a lot more time and time slots are a lot larger. You do not have to print this week, so if you are pressed for time, you can skip it, but if you want to feel free.
  • Make sure you are updating your printing portfolios. Some of you are doing a good job with this, updating with pictures etc. Others not so much.


  • Due by Thursday is your one paragraph proposal for you paper topic. See below for the guidelines if you missed this.
  • And finally on Tuesday I will hand out the midterm, which is a take home exam that will be due back to me after spring break.
  • If you missed class you probably want a copy of the midterm.

Other Notes.

Week of February 23rd


  • Take this survey seriously, do it now. It will only take two minutes and it helps us know what classes you need us to teach next semester. If you fill this out it helps us not have to cancel classes, or not offer enough. In short fill out this survey = you have a better chance of getting the courses you want.

Assignments for Printing

  • The week of the 23rd, we will not meet for a discussion/seminar class, instead, you will have two days of printing. You can sign up here for printing the week of the 23rd.(Sign up for two slots).
  • On those two days come with .stl models you want to print. Either make one from scratch, or edit an existing one.

But Important …

  • The week before Spring Break you will need to submit to me your research topic proposal. You want to come up with the topic in relation to 3d Printing that you are most interested in writing about. Topic ideas include:
    • 3D Printing in relation to a particular industry (clothing, cars, houses)
    • 3D Printing and intellectual property
    • 3D Printing and the law
    • 3D Printing and the field of medicine
    • 3D Printing technology advancement
    • 3D Printing and NASA/Outerspace
    • Types of 3D Printers, and types of Materials
    • Art and 3D Printing
  • Mostly you want to think about something else you are interested in and see if it relates to 3D Printing. Topic proposals are just one-two paragraphs sketching the range of what you want to do. Choose carefully though as you want something you are interested in. These will be due on March 3rd.
  • Update: If you are having trouble coming up with something to write about a good idea is to look at 3dPrinting News or 3D Printing Industry and look for a story that interests you.
  • You can download the Paper Assignment in full here.

Carey on Communication Part Two

Tuesday February 17th

  • Read: Communication as Culture James Carey. Chapters 5-7
  • Keywords: Electronic Utopians, Harold Innis, Hegemony of New York, Ideology of the Future

Thursday February 19th

  • Printing. I will cover in class on Tuesday how to edit/change a model (.stl) so on Thursday you will be able to print something of your own design. Sign up for Printing here. Notice there are extra slots now on Friday.

Bonus Points

  • For the brave and the bold, there is another program you can try using when we print later in the week. This program is called Cura. It is actually easier to use than the ones we have been, and lets you use one program instead of two (its like Slic3r and Repetier Host all in one). You can download it here, and look at the instructions for it here.


  • Download this keychain/luggage tag.
  • Load it into TinkerCad.
  • Change the design in some way. You can add your name to it, add another design, add some other words, you can change the size to make it smaller, whatever you want.
  • Download what you modified.
  • Bring your design to class, we will print some.
  • If you would really like to be creative you can upload another .stl file or .svg file to create something. This instructable gives you a senes of how to do it. Once you complete step one though you can just upload the .svg file to Tinkercad.