This week, something happened that may very well have been a historic moment: President Obama and Donald Trump agreed on something.
In fairness, they may have agreed on other things in the past. In fact, they have; both have expressed the opinion at one time or another that the war in Iraq was a bad idea, so maybe this week wasn’t so historic. Whatever. Let me have my dramatic opening statement. So what was this magical, reaching-across-the-aisle, bringing-the-people-together issue that these two very different politicians agreed upon?
3D printing! Mostly, that it’s important and good.
You’ve likely heard, many times, about how President Obama has referred to 3D printing as important, or as the next industrial revolution. Trump, in his second official foreign policy speech, which he delivered earlier this week, went a step further to say that not only is 3D printing good, but America is the best at it, and we should use it to crush our enemies.
We will spend what we need to rebuild our military… We will develop, build, and purchase the best equipment known to mankind,” Trump stated. “Our military dominance must be unquestioned — and I mean unquestioned by anybody and everybody. We need to think smarter about areas where our technological superiority – and nobody comes close – gives us an edge. This includes 3D printing, artificial intelligence, and cyber-warfare.”
While some may not agree that “nobody comes close” to the United States in all of the technology, it’s hardly a surprising statement from the “Make America Great Again” presidential candidate, who, in many ways, has shown himself to believe that America is pretty great already. So how can 3D printing help us win wars? Artificial intelligence and cyber-warfare are easier to imagine having an impact on how our military operates, but 3D printing?
Well, sure. The military has been interested in 3D printing for a long time, and has already been putting it to use in multitudes of applications that are likely to change not only the way our military engages with the rest of the world, but how it affects our own domestic industry and economy. I’m more interested to learn more about Trump’s ideas as to how we can “think smarter” about these technologies and utilize them in ways that we aren’t currently. We can definitely benefit from new ideas about cyber-security, before we even get into cyber-warfare of any kind – I’m less convinced about America’s superiority in that arena, considering how often our government agencies get hacked.
Just before he began talking about technology, Trump promised that ISIS will be eradicated pretty much as soon as he becomes president. If he has a way to incorporate 3D printing into that plan, I can’t wait to hear about it. You can see the entire speech below. Are you surprised to hear about Trump’s statement, or did you hear the speech previously? Discuss in the Trump & 3D Printing forum over at 3DPB.com.