A “Fax Machine for Things”

Here’s a trillion-dollar idea for you – free of charge. Complete with some general specification and what such a unit could do for America.

It’s all an outgrowth of our Ultra-Make.com website, which in turn is one of the “last chapters” of the online book for subscribers titled “The 100-Year Toaster.”

I’ll give you all the build specifications for this product (as a marketing exercise) right after our usual morning fare:  A few headlines including the ADP Jobs report just out, plus out ChartPack.

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25 thoughts on “A “Fax Machine for Things””

  1. George – U certainly did not underestimate anyone regards Bitcoin – U appear to be Overestimating the number of mentally Un-Flexable, Grumpy – Dont move my cheese types.

    Hard Money – Safe Havens always go up,up,up during times of warfare & strife – get a Clue it will help when the Dow hits 30K – olayolay..

    No Bitcoin 4 U!

  2. George,

    This sounds like the beginnings of the ‘replicator’ on ‘Star Trek. Press a button and out comes a ham sandwich. You definitely do have a potential trillion dollar idea with this, but I’ve got a few questions and some observations.

    First, at this moment what kind of items can be printed with a 3-D printer that the average person would want or need? I can tell you that most of things my wife buys from Amazon are fashion/beauty related and I’m fairly sure that we haven’t reached that level of printing sophistication yet. It’s a cool idea and I can think of a few things that I might be interested in, but I wouldn’t need them often enough to be interested in this level of investment.

    Second, let’s say that this idea becomes a reality and at some point comes ‘on-line’. At what point do you break even after investing in the equipment and raw materials? Wouldn’t it still be cheaper and easier to just order most things directly from Amazon? The digital plans for an item would be much less expensive than buying the already-made product, but then you’d still need to buy the raw materials to make the product or products. The raw material has to be manufactured and shipped to the end user. So, a large portion of the savings would be lost in that transaction.

    Third, would you need to re-purchase the digital file every time or would you have a license that allowed you to make a certain number of copies? Perhaps a special price for ‘lifetime’ use?

    Fourth, how would Amazon prevent the digital file for the product from basically being pirated by the first person who purchased it and the emailed to all of their friends?

    • 1. All consumer products. There are only a few “processes” in assembly some people might not have: wave soldering, spot welding, and who has a T-20 Torx beings me?
      2. Break-even point is after you have “printed/made” about $2,000 worth of goods.
      3. Depends which licensing model is followed. I prefer unlimited for one computer only.
      4. Same technology that is used to protect Kindle ebooks from being wholesale ripped (and a mean, nasty kick-your ass if you void it) legal department which friends who could push copyright infringers into criminal prosecutions.

      • Thanks, George.

        I think I grok the concept now. Those were the first obvious hurdles that jumped into my brain.

        I’m a little bit of a tool slut, too. That doesn’t mean I know how to use all of them properly. Point in case: soldering and welding. Everyone is better off if I avoid those tasks.

    • Ultra-make sounds like an old Heath Kit style idea with a 3D Printer thrown in the mix to bring it up to date. “Fax Machine of Things” seems outdated. I am out of the business world, but isn’t the fax machine on the way out. It is a good idea, but If this succeeded, I would be suprised. You need a lot of products, like Amazon, to be profitable, & it takes capital to promote, unless you plan to run it like a hobby.

      • Why not buy a 3D Printer, design & then build a 3D Printer using the 3D Printer you bought, & sell it. Eliminate the middleman. Become the next Dell of 3D printers.

      • When FMD (fused metal deposition) printers arrive that will be possible.
        The other thing that is (or ought to be coming) is locally recyclable plastic.
        Print up a [product] and then, when use is done, toss it into the local “reformer/extruder” and out comes a recycled role ofs printable filament again… (or resin, or metal)

  3. Some odds & Ends:

    1) The 737 crashed AFTER the missile attack. Trigger-happy anti-aircraft batteries on hair-nerve alert? What sane captain would fly out so soon? Hardly a routine day at the airport…

    2) Proximity of events in time makes them seem bigger.

    3) “Objects In The Mirror May Be Closer Than They Appear.”

  4. LOL LOL LOL.. I have a cute fax machine story..LOL LOL…
    you go into a bank.. would you like death and disability policy.. you never know the what if..
    you get the you never know the what if at work on credit cards etc etc.. they even send people door to door from time to time..
    I was always a pre planner .. it is better to be defensive planner than an offensive have to do it at the last minute.. I had the dissability plant at the bank on the credit cards at work.. etc.. spent a great deal of money on that crap every month.. and if you break a finger no problem they cover it..
    if it is something more serious.. boy the tune changes..
    I went years not ever getting sick.. then it happened.. my health went to hell in a handbasket..
    so bad they thought bone cancer, lupus, etc etc.. I was five times my normal size mottled.. started having all kinds of issues.. at one point there was talk of putting me in hospice..
    I had the look.. and anyone in the medical profession that is the greatest fear .. to see yourself in the mirror and have the look..
    I of course was not to worried.. I had pre planned we should be ok financially… OOPS. boy was I in for a surprise.. even at the insurance department at the hospitals they just laugh.. and then fill you in on just how good they are.. ( they aren’t) and you submit.. they ask for a new submission.. the one I liked was.. we received your claim at twelve fifteen and we quit taking new applications at twelve please resubmit.. LOL…
    so anyway.. none of them were worth the paper they were written on.. to get them to even accept a claim one had to be mailed one faxed and one by certified mail and they had to get one from the state office of insurance… otherwise.. nope not going to happen..
    I did think that the one at the bank was good.. and wasn’t worried about it because the bank handled the claim.. then it was friday.. memorial weekent…I had efax.. I could’t get up out of a chair.. the pain was so intense.. ( I can’t even imagine it now ) my hands looked like footballs.. and I get a phone call.. are you still planning on keeping the house.. yes.. I have that insurance.. oh they have to get a claim from you.. oh No.. I was scared.. frantic.. I had the claims on the computer and the efax account.. I clicked send.. got back.. busy please submit to send.. so every two minutes for three days day and night.. ( I was in so much pain that is all I could do.. it had to go through..) to the insurance company the state office LOL LOL tuesday morning.. eight zero One.. I get a frantic phone call.. from the state office.. DON’T FAX ANYMORE we got it.. I get at eight zero five a call from the insurance company and the bank.. DONT FAX ANYMORE we got it.. LOL LOL
    it was the only dissability policy that covered during that drastic time.. LOL LOL LOL
    the dumb fax machine must have printed all day long LOL LOL
    A word to be wiser.. don’t buy the policies.. unless your going to just plan on breaking a leg.. they are not written on four inch rolls of double ply soft paper..its a waste of money..
    put the money that it would cost in a separate account.. or savings bonds.. for the what if scenario..
    It was urban survival and people nomics that got me through those rough days…
    a lady that was in the same boat as myself.. she wasn’t as hopeful.. and ended it instead of fighting through it all.. we were learning how to walk all over again together.. I had a hard tme with that.. I would look out for her and the day I thought she just was tired from the great weekend she had had with her family was the day she decided to leave.. still bothers me to this day..

      • they still don’t know..
        I come up false positives.. I worked in a lot of different fields.. with a lot of chemicals and heavy metals not to mention I worked day and night.. the first thought was pimpagus.. and was sent to the mayo several times.. then I ended up where my legs were swollen and black with water blisters on them.. and they said blood poisoning and I spent about three months in the hospital with that.. then the kid that I worked withmy doctor friend that worked side by side with me got into practice and I tested positive for lymes.. spent a few weeks in the hospital with that one to.. then I was horse for a long time the DON wanted to look at my throat she got the odd look they get when they get scared and sent me to the ER… they in turn sent me to see three other doctors that all got concerned.. thought throat cancer.. made an appointment with a skin doctor for an appointment a year away because he was booked that long.. I got home he was on the phone and wanted to see me right away.. I get in he did some biopsies.. and it came back lupus.. he was getting me ready for systemic lupus and then I tested negative for it.. went along the way for a while they thought a weird gout.. everything went along ok for a bit then one day the doctor was checking me out for odd swelling and asked me how many hours I was working.. then said.. you know one day that will catch up to you.. a year later.. it had.. I got to the point I was taking prednisone one right after another to stay up.. they sent me to a bone specialist that did a bone scan I came up the christmas tree.. the doctor told me.. oh its nothing to worry about and made me an appointment for a month later.. I got home and can you come back into town and get an mri.. then I was going to a different specialist.. they did the injections.. I have had my lifetime supply of them.. within a couple of weeks I was down for the count.. mottled and had the look.. it was not good.. my hands were the size of foot balls.. so much pain you have no idea.. what is frustraiting for me is none of it makes any sense.. like when I started to have seizures.. why doc.. there has to be a common denominator.. what is it.. then when I started to go blind.. it shocked everyone.. they thought torn retina.. nope.. just a dying optic nerve.. each year it is something different.. last year it was my liver spleen and pancreas.. this year.. who knows.. I will come up positive for one thing one time then its gone.. sneaky.. I would love to at least have a name to put to it..
        I am no longer in a wheel chair or walker although I keep both close by.. I get around pretty good and the bouts are far enough apart that I forget just how miserable you can get..Now for the truly odd thing.. I have one sibling that had brain tumor.. they checked me for that one to since I had scar tissue from when I fell working for the county.. there was a study being done about long term exposeure and those drinking unfiltered whole milk during the white sands nuclear testing.. my sibling was in that study.. one of the diseases they thought it was.. (I had many of the simptoms but some of them weren’t there.)that to over seventy percent are in a clustered area. one of those clustered area’s for that one is the love canal.. then there was that I worked day labor for five days scooping hot dirt from a spill.. of course they didn’t tell us that.. only the bosses had the protective suits on.. and very few people even know about it.. heck we didn’t know about it till afterwards.. or is it pesticides herbicides.. even using kitchen oil pan sprays you should wear a mask.. long term maintenance workers end up with lung issues from window sprays.. so could it be that.. I worked with all of that.. I worked lab.. use to go belly up in all kinds of chemistry.. most of the guys I worked with got pimpagus..
        then a couple of years ago.. my sister calls and she asked what that specialist had to say about when I started to go blind.The reason.. she is having similar problems like I am and it has all the doctors in her part of the country all confused because none of it makes a bit of sense… I told her that the doctor did not do a thing he didn’t have a clue.. I backed away when he sat there and said after I waited for hours in the waiting room and he didn’t have a clue.. the bill was four thousand dollars a several hour trip in a vehicle that reminded me of a go cart I built when I was nine or ten.. and not even a cup of coffee or a cookie and he didn’t do any tests.. I am sorry.. they can do nothing where I live and tell me they don’t have a clue and not cost me a dime..
        I sure didn’t expect to still be here today.. so each day is a blessing..
        I am trying to talk the wife into selling out.. moving into a smaller place.. because the cancer scare last year is enough.. and since I am the numbers guy in the household.. I can tell you now that with us paying as much as we are for her health care insurance.. and the other expenses a house has.. she can’t do it if I died.. I couldn’t do it if she died..
        I did help out someone that was going to school outside the USA and the cost of living there was a fraction of what it is here.. and health coverage is a given for everyone..
        If I had had cancer.. I had thought about the UK.. there they are doing some pretty good studies on marijuana and fighting cancer.. (no getting high) or colorado where you can get the pain medications that are not addictive.. anyway..
        no one has a clue.. just something new and odd every year.. I take it one day at a time.. I have a good sense of humor on it though.. I told the doctor if you gotta chop the leg off then give me a peg leg and one with toes on both sides.. ( days I don’t know if I am coming or going) if they had to remove the eye because of an infection or something then I want an artificial one with a big pupil.. so I can give someone the eye LOL..

      • This reads more like a Stephen King novel than a medical H&I (history and information).

        Did anyone stop to wonder if this wasn’t just a case of internal shingles?

        If I put on my “intuitive channeling House” it might have/be something like that. Chasing symptoms around that don’t seem to fit…yet there’s a commonality to it.

        Other House wannabe’s are welcome to toss one in the ring, here…

      • “Did anyone stop to wonder if this wasn’t just a case of internal shingles?”

        I DON”T KNOW.. I will ask. the crazy thing is none of it matches or makes any logical sense.. the closest is the neuro myelytis optica and lupus… but then except for the tests that came up positive for lymes and lupus nothing has shown up. . I have had some pretty good doctors to.. baffles the heck out of them and like most things I look at it like a puzzle.. I can tellyou that is why people become addicted to opiates.. you will do whatever it takes for relief if your in pain.. I am all for the lesser of the two evils.. but the one that doesn’t have the addictive and life threatoning affects from the pain killers..I have read what research I have access to on studies being done… All in All Medicine is the best guess.. just like anything with science.. there has to be a common denominator just no one knows what it is yet.. I had thought arthritis of some sort.. from when I fell thirty feet.. well not quite thirty like twenty seven.. and got busted up good..
        then a lot of the guys i worked with all passed on from cancers because of the chemicals we worked with.. One in DC working at the school there ended up having to go to another country to have the bones in his face rebuilt.. the doctor doing the procedure teaches there at one of the colleges.. but has a clinic in another country.. the price difference is amazing between the two..
        I try not to let it bug me anymore.. mostly because I have worked around enough things that I know none of it matches and the ones that it does match will come up negative or give me a positive then be negative.. last year it was suspected pancreatic.. this year who knows.. what ever is the cause hasn’t shown its ugly head yet..
        but.. my thought is.. the study my sister was in.. about the testing in White sands.. if that is one of the causes.. I wonder.. I had read studies on the problems with fukishima.. and the PNW.. and I wonder.. I had read one once that had the questions of how long would it take before they start seeing the negative affects from it in the PNW..
        Then I consider.. did I work with some one from another country.. a good friend of mine a couple years ago now.. was a surgical nurse.. didn’t wash good enough or change clothes.. her husband said she had a weekend off and was excited.. caught what the patient had and lasted two months..
        G2 was doing a book on MRSA.. I have seen that ugly up hand and personal as well.. woman got it in surgury.. it was one of the ugliest things you can imagine.. I won’t get graphic with what she went through but it was horrendous.. most of those there are few that will actually work with them.. I was one of the few that wasn’t scared enough to venture forth and help where I could..
        As for myself.. at my age.. do I really want to take out another long term mortgage on the house for more tests? and if I did.. and they finally discovered the root cause.. where would the money come from for the treatments.. they don’t treat if you can’t pay.. they will diagnose but not treat.. that is why that young lady decided to go.. the insurance company wouldn’t pay for the treatments.. and she didn’t want to bogg her husband down with a life of endless medical bills..

        my new friend was out talking to me he had some gentlemen come over and give him some more crappy news…. he gets torn up over what they are doing with him.. I told him not to worry or fret over it.. it is over now.. that is that each and every one of us will be there.. if your lucky enough to land in a nursing facility.. thats a quarter mil a year if you live a few years.. your broke they own you.. go get treatments for cancer or some other disease.. there again a trip to the ER is a grand up front.. the cost of a kleenex is ten bucks.. but then they have to charge that.. if one in three don’t have the funds to pay and no insurance..
        nursing facilities.. one lady I talked with said that they loose a half a million dollars on one simple thing.. and the cost of staff buildings.. etc.. that is when I started to worry about where my wife is working. I know the guy even though he is taking in a chunk of change isn’t getting enough to keep the boat afloat.. he will sink.. first big thing that comes along will sink him..
        we pay most of our income for health insurance.. ( they upped it for this year a couple hundred a month..next year because we are getting older I anticipate them doubling it.. trying to get the wife off of the plan)

      • WEll, the cost for a shingles test is pretty low, I’d imagine – and it sure seems to tie-up all the loose ends. Be damn interesting if they missed it…go read the link I posted on internal organ shingles…

      • looking out of the box maybe you need to start looking for a different type of healers. I have found the established medical folks don’t know everything. Example- know a guy who got his 91 yr old dad out of hospice and brought him baack to abq. There is doc who was an orthopedic surgeon in china and came here and they wanted her to go back to school. So she went to acupuncture and has written some very scholarly books on it. The guy took his dad to this doc and she said it would take 4mo to cure his Parkinson. At the exact end of 4 mo not a day sooner his dad was healed. The guy and his dad spent the next 4 years with him riding a bike and his dad riding a recumberent trike on a 5 mile trail every day in the bosque

      • I am definately going to ask them abut the shingles.. dam I bet that they never gave that a thought at all.. if that was it all this time it sure would be a shame.. heck all of this time and that is easily treatable.. and if that was it.. god.. I cannot even tell you how frustraiting that is to.. be doing real good and then wham.. I can feel when it is getting ready to start to. when it is the most miserable that is when I feel the best.. I told the wife.. we have to find the most god forsaken place on the planet with the most miserable climate and move there.. . all the tests.. some of them pretty nasty.. like the bone marrow one.. phew.. a true experience all itself.. Joe.. I have tried acupuncture.. wow.. it was amazing.. and I never felt better but would have to get it done every couple of weeks.. I went as long as it was covered.. ( three visits..) then the fourth I had to pay.. the cost of the pills is cheaper..I would like to go to canada they are doing some research into dandelion root oil.. the studies are really impressive..
        What is so frustraiting is.. you never know what organ it is going to affect next the joint issues are a given…. it will affect a system or organ.. then it will be gone.. what makes it confusiing is I was always working and did what I had to to get by.. so .. I have a huge range of exposures.. chemical, heavy metal, or is it hereditary.. environmental..Or.. did I damage my body by working the kind of hours I did.. even now.. I still am chugging along almost the same hours..

      • if or when it gets to the point where there will be an extended stay of treatments.. the first thing on my list.. is
        get a divorce….
        the reason is simple.. she will need to be able to survive.. and they don’t care about family.. like my new friend.. they did him in.. I don’t want her to go through any of that trauma.. I can’t even tell you how many people I have seen that has lost everything and the spouse ends up sleeping on someones couch or in the waiting room..
        long term care facilities are full of fresh divorcee’s..
        what was interesting was the simple things.. how hard it was to lift a glass of water to get a drink.. or do something simple like peel a potato or an apple,open a can. do the basic duties in the toilet..I have the one handed peeler the one handed can opener.. etc.. heat and eats that can be opened easily..
        getting in and out of a tub or a shower stall.. that two inch lip is a mountain.. trust me.. so I had wheel chair accessible bathroom and bidets on all the toilets tub lifts.. hand rails and stand assists.. easy lift and stand aids.. I got those when I was stuck in the chair.. and I still had some money chunked aside.. they sit by the side now but when it happens again it will be available again….

  5. probably a few bucks from guru dalio 2 .. rays getting the congressional medal of honour .. real apple pie and stars and stripes boy

  6. silver and copper now that’s a story !!!! how much gold the fed got .. ummm = zero .. gone.. fort knox eh

  7. “Although there has been a rocket attack on a U.S. Base in Iraq overnight, our view is this is likely just a “quick-reaction strike” in order to placate the radicals at home and make it appear as though Iran is ready to rumble at a moment’s notice.

    I don’t think that’s the case, however, and more likely in my (two-bit analyst’s) view is that this is only a feint.”

    They flew the S2S missiles over Iraqi bases, from which U.S. personnel are running limited ops, to be accurate.

    It IS most-likely a feint. Solaimani’s M.O. was always to “throw the Ruling Council a (propaganda) bone” by doing a rapid “retaliation.” He would then go into planning. The REAL response would come generally 6-10 months later, after exhaustive exploratory target acquisition, then plotting both the military logistics and propaganda value of the intended response. Ghaani is nowhere near the tactician Solaimani was, but they’ve used this same basic “game plan” since the 1980s, so I doubt they’ll change response tactics until these cease to produce the desired result.

    U.S. Military analysts are now saying the Iranian missile attacks on those bases were not intentional misses, but that the Iranians’ aim is really that bad. I discount this. WE play the propaganda game, also. Iran has had a successful and advanced space program since 1996 — advanced to the point they have done remote rendezvous with existing satellites. They may not be able to fly a missile down a chimney, but they can sureashell put one through an overhead door, if they so-desire…

    The Ayatollahs are cowards, bullies, and despots, but they’re not fools. The bleeding-heart idiots in the West whine that Iran has not fought a war in many years. This is militarily true but technically false. What Iran DOES do is use “proxy soldiers” and “agents” to carry out asymmetrical battles in dozens of countries, thus giving the Ayatollahs and the R.C. “plausible deniability” on the world propaganda stage, even when the action can easily be “power-trailed” back to Tehran.

    When the reports of the downed airliner surfaced, my first thought was: “Who was on the plane?”

    That thought hasn’t changed.

    Iran uses a modern and highly-sophisticated Russian S2A anti-air missile battery. It can’t be fired by mistake, and it can’t be fired by a lone operator. Therefore, Iran brought down that 737 intentionally… so, why?

    It’ll be an interesting “popcorn minute” when the passenger list goes public…

    “Something that I have been thinking about this week is does the US killing of Soleimani create a modern day rhyme to the killing of Archduke Ferdinand which started WW 1? ”

    Bear in-mind, Ferdy was the excuse for the lazy history professors who wrote the high-school history books from which we were taught, but WW-I was begun because Austria-Hungary had been left behind by the changing political climate of early 20th Century Europe, and wanted a quick victory in a quick war, to acquire a degree of “relevance in modern times.” Unfortunately, Britain and France had “mutual defense” treaties with Serbia, and Austria was (and is) Germany’s b!tch…

    “Vegan beef” (texturized vegetable protein) can be made to taste and feel exactly like beef (or any other source of high-quality protein.) Unfortunately, the additives required to turn TVP into syn-beef make the end-product considerably less-healthy than the HQ protein it is marketed to replace. Even turkey bacon and turkey sausage require heart-attack-inducing levels of sodium and other additives to be made palatable. Why would anyone with two or more working synapses eat an imitation product, when the real thing is better-tasting, cheaper, and healthier (or “less unhealthy…?”)

    I think the real question would be: Can someone daisy-chain a metal-capable 3D printer with a CNC bandsaw, mill, router, grinder/polisher, and a robot that’s constructed to load/unload materials & machines, assemble parts to create devices, then dump the finished devices — and when will FMD tech mature to the point a 3D printer can print tempered, “forged,” or case-hardened bits…?

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