After Labor Day, the ebTDesign Press published MAKERSPACE DEVELOPMENT: Surviving the Next Wave. This short guide is marketed with the caption that America doesn’t need another Silicon Valley. Most Americans believe that too much money has been invested in cloud-based services and not enough in makerspace development. Now, they must consider the furor over security concerns that American online icons are dealing with in Europe.
On the other hand, Americans should also consider the impact that economic deflation is having on the mood of those living in the EU. People have a habit of masking their real concerns and lashing out over wholly unrelated issues. Deflationary trends started in Spain earlier this year and now the Italians are starting to feel the sting. You can think of deflation as the value of goods going down while the debt on those goods stay the same.
For makerspace developers, the issue is the fact that Silicon Valley has pretty much missed the current wave of 3D Printer innovation. Most of the current generation of 3D printer innovation is led by companies from the European Union. There are plenty of consumer based 3D printers looking for funding on Kickstarter. However, the industry leaders in metal and multi-material 3D printers are all from the EU.
Unfortunately, there is nothing that Americans can do to get back into the game when it comes to this generation. Makerspace Developers are just going to have to buy 3D printers from other countries and vow to compete better for leadership in the next generation of machines. There is no time to cry over spilt milk so to speak. The next wave of business challenges will not wait. The twenty-first century will simply continue on without us.