"Oh god, No!"

Awesome Video: Elders React to 3D Printers

Elders React to 3D Printers

Think grandma could use a 3D printer? This episode from YouTube famous Fine Brothers shows how “Elders React to 3D Printing.”

In a new video titled “Elders React to 3D Printers”, the internet shows us what happens when grandma is introduced to 3D printing. The video comes from the Fine Brothers, who are famous for their several YouTube series, including “Kids React,” “Elders React,” and other similar set-ups.

The episode is part of the Elders React to Technology series, and stars eleven elderly folks having their first encounter with a 3D printer. The video isn’t just funny (and highly quotable); it seems to offer a fairly well-rounded look into printing and how it is perceived.

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The video begins by introducing the elders to a mysterious, covered machine. Each cast member is told how it is an important piece of technology. Everyone is, of course, excited to see it unveiled. As soon as the cover is removed, the elders are met with a Robo 3D Printer. The first response?

“I’m really underwhelmed.”

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Yes, at first glance, the printer seems surprisingly uninspiring. Though the words “robo” imply that the machine is some kind of robot, the elders don’t seem very impressed. When asked what it might be, guesses range from a copier to an automatic lanyard maker to the most common response: “I have no idea.”

As time passes, it becomes clear that the elders find the printer intriguing, and many already know a bit on the topic. While a bit skeptical at times, the responses are overwhelming positive.

Each participant is given the chance to print their very first 3D object. Most were excited but incredibly skeptical about their capabilities and at least one simply said: “Oh god, NO.”

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Everyone was given four options to print: an iPhone case, a padlock, Thor’s Hammer and a spork. Extreme excitement at the first moments of printing quickly died as they were told each print could take anywhere from two to seventeen hours.

“Twelve hours? Get out of here. Go buy one at the store.”

ELDERS REACT FACT: While several manufacturers attempted to create 3D printers affordable enough for individual use in the late 2000’s, one of the first successful models to market was the BfB RapMan 3D printer released in 2009. The printer came in pieces that the user had to assemble, and at the time of its release cost over $1,600 USD.

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The Fine Brothers then bring up some of the social issues surrounding 3D printing, not the least of which has been printed guns. Without missing a beat, most elders responded that there was simply no stopping technology. Some had already heard about the printed guns, but that did not influence the overwhelmingly positive response. Though governments may try to sensor it, it sounds like the possibilities far outweigh the risks. When asked what fields printing would be most used, they also had plenty of ideas. Medical fields, commerce, in space and car manufacturing—all of which are fields printing is, in fact, used. Their ability to pinpoint these fields in the blink of an eye is mildly shocking. While some of us are intrigued by printed battle armor for cats and customizable cookie cutters, the elders went straight for actual world-changing uses.

Finally, even elders know that the current 3D printer is nowhere near perfect. Though described as “plain dang impressive,” most agreed that they would not want a current model. Some even suggested waiting a few years for one that was of better quality.

Plain darn impressive (Image: Fine Brothers)
Plain darn impressive (Image: Fine Brothers)

The story told by the video can be very well summed up in the words of one of the participants, because what would the video be without a touch of heart-warming life advice?

“My great-aunt was born in 1889. Her attitude always was “oh, isn’t this exciting?” So I think it’s really important to kind of have that attitude about it: Isn’t this exciting? Isn’t this amazing? What else can it do? And be just in awe.

Who isn’t happy to see 3D printing get featured in one of the famed Fine Brothers episodes? Elders React to 3D Printing is right between Elders React to Anaconda, and Elders React to Snapchat.

ELDERS REACT FACT: Some of the greatest strides in 3D printing are being found in medicine, where the technology is creating human organs (replicating muscle tissue, bones and eardrums) and building prosthetics or bionic equipment for those with limited mobility. Even more advancements with stem cells, customized pharmaceuticals, and organ regeneration are expected in the near future.