The partnership will bring the Makers Empire educational CAD tablet app and 3D design and 3D printing curriculum into Hong Kong classrooms bundled with DTSL’s equipment and technical support.
The Makers Empire app is a simple CAD tool that allows even young children the chance to design and 3D print their own creations without needing any actual CAD experience. The app is designed to work with a tablet in a classroom environment, allowing students to learn the basics of 3D design and integrates easily with a web-based teachers’ portal that provides lesson plans and a full 3D design and 3D printing curriculum. Additionally any networked 3D printers can quickly 3D print student creations and projects directly from the app without complicated or time consuming workflows.
DTSL – Dynamic Technologies Services Limited – is one of China’s more successful 3D printing companies, and they will manage the entire educational 3D printing workflow, including maintaining the 3D printers, Makers Empire enabled tablets and the network needed to connect everything together and sell it as a bundled service to schools. DTSL has already brought 3D printing into several Hong Kong schools, and with their partnership with Makers Empire they expect to expand their business further into educational settings.
“Our partnership with Makers Empire has further strengthened our edge in the 3D printing industry.” said DTSL Business Director Jack Wu. “Makers Empire is attractive for youngsters to learn and pick up the 3D modeling skills. It enables us to provide a complete 3D printing solution to both education and the fast growing consumer markets”.
The 2014 NMC Horizon report has listed mobile learning as one of the fastest areas of educational advancement. Driven by the rapidly falling cost of tablet technology and the rise of stable and reliable wireless connectivity, many schools, teachers and educational experts have seen how useful the technology can be in a modern classroom. As 3D printing continues to become more important to industrial design and manufacturing, schools are very quickly scrambling to find ways to integrate it into primary and secondary school education.
With textbook companies and traditional curriculum designers dragging their feet entering digital education due to piracy fears and a lack of experience with the technology, small independent app developers are starting to fill in the holes by creating their own educational apps and software. Makers Empire has just made a pretty big push into mainstream education with this partnership.
The NMC Horizon Report has also said that 3D printing is going to begin to have a large impact on education and higher learning within the next 2-3 years. Based on the NMC’s track record of pretty accurately predicting the direction that high tech education seems to take, this likely puts 3D printing in line to be one of the next big things being pushed into classrooms.