America, it’s time to start making things again

After years of going overseas, American companies are starting to make things in the U.S. again. At the same time, many citizens are getting their hands dirty with DIY projects. This could be the start of something beautiful.

Dylan’s Desk: Saddle your horses and fire up the 3D printer

Is there anything more American than a robot that can create anything you want out of little more than a spool of wire and some electricity? It’s only a slight exaggeration to say that the MakerBot offers levels of Jeffersonian self-reliance that our founding fathers only dreamed of.

Shapeways lands $5 million for 3D printing

Dutch startup Shapeways, which lets you design and print your own 3D objects, just raised $5 million. The company will also move its headquarters to New York from its current home base of Eindhoven in The Netherlands. The majority of Shapeways users are currently in the U.S.

Make your own gadget with Ponoko and SparkFun

Think you can give Steve Jobs a run for his money in product design? Ponoko, which let’s you manufacture your own products from materials like timber, plastic and metal, has just announced a partnership with open-source electronics supplier SparkFun. Effectively this means that you can manufacture any item which consists of electronics inside a casing — lamps, music players, robots, and more.