Future Links July 8th 2015

Today our news roundup from the printing industry covers bold prediction about the future of 3D printing, attention-getting graphics on corrugated packaging, mobile printing for office printers, Ford’s 3D printed tools, Bellmer’s acquisition of Gapcon, new approaches to 3D bone printing and the potential downside of offshore printing.

Bold predictions about the future of 3D printing
The scenarios spelled out in the article are thought provoking: Will Nike be a pure software company in ten years when people just download shoe designs and print them at home? Will we all have customized knee replacements when our own knees give out? The new developments in 3D printing could lead to a future where manufacturing, retail and even health care could look very different from today.
More at Forbes

New process makes graphics stand out on corrugated packaging
The rise of ecommerce and the increase of point-of-sales displays have heightened the importance of visually attractive packaging. Sutherland Packaging is prepared to meet this need and provides direct color print on corrugated packaging, including club-store packs and single-piece point-of-purchase (POP) displays that are shipped flat and then pop open.
More at Packaging Digest

Lantronix offers app-free mobile printing for office printers
Lantronix, a specialized networking company, is introducing the new xPrintServer Office. It allows app-free mobile printing from a variety of mobile devices. The new xPrintServer is the first Apple AirPrint and Google Cloud Print certified print server solution that supports desktop-level quality printing to thousands of printers and copiers, according to Lantronix.
More at CNN Money

Ford uses 3D printed tools to improve 3D printing process
Ford is one of the few companies that is not only embracing 3D printing technology but actually finding new and creative uses for it. It has started a project in which employees are encouraged to design and 3D print tools that can, in turn, improve the 3D printing process.
More at 3D Print

Bellmer acquires Gapcon
Gebr. Bellmer GmbH Maschinenfabrik has acquired the paper machinery and equipment supplier Gapcon from the Irle Group. The deal does not include the Italian branch of Gapcon and its 30 employees. Gapcon Italy will remain within the Irle group and specialize in making tissue machinery.
More at EUWID Pulp and Paper 

Different approaches show promise for 3D bone printing
There has been a lot of research into 3D printed bones to help accident victims and people with severe illnesses. One approach was published in Biofabrication recently. The researchers combined two commonly used biomaterials into a thermoresponsive blend that could be printed and then quickly cured into a solid at 37 degrees Celsius. The main component is polylactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA), which is stabilized with polyethylene glycol (PEG).
More at Extreme Tech