Ponoko – From Idea To Tangible Product

From an interesting comment here on the MJ …

we believe that Ponoko’s the first company to offer a platform whereby creators, manufacturers and consumers can meet – and potentially co-create- through the awesome technologies available today. Ponoko’s looking at the very real future of offering anyone (from highly proficient designers/creators/inventors, to those who’ve just got a cool idea) the tools and contacts to give it a go, and potentially create long term revenue (or just create something cool for themselves that they’ve always wanted!).

The Ponoko site says it

is like having your own personal workshop and factory … and online showroom to sell your designs.

Ponoko – Make Things, Sell Things 

Their blog has videos and other good 411. I’ve got to find time to join the beta and get a closer look – this has tremendous upside!



  1. Derek said

    Cool – thanks for your post!

    We are launching our open beta isute in San Francisco next month 🙂

  2. csven said

    I’ll be interested in seeing the open beta. As it happens, I was working with a well-known Web 2.0 pundit a while back to do the same thing. But after doing some research, we came to the conclusion that the fabbing technology just wasn’t there yet. It still isn’t really, but there’s no reason not to ramp up with available technology and get the web-based portion in place.

    Meanwhile, watch Amazon and eBay.

  3. lr said

    >It still isn’t really
    That’s been my thinking too, though shift can happen pretty quickly when equipment costs drop to where people can start playing around in their garages. Could we be in that fuzzy zone where a breakout is possible depending on how big a bet one is able to make and more importantly how strong a human sweet spot the product line can hit from a coolness/design perspective?

  4. csven said

    I think we broke into the “fuzzy zone” just before May. That’s when the sub-$10k announcements and rumors started to hit (May is when the annual RAPID show is held, so sometimes press releases precede it). Not that direct equipment cost was our issue. It wasn’t. It was piece cost, material/process limitations, and perceived consumer expectations.

    Anyway, our effort is on indefinite hold as of early last Fall. And since I had no interest in running an online fab-on-demand service – just helping set it up so I could *use* it – it’s no big deal to me. I’m happy to take the technology that’s available now and work with it.

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