With the need for more secure ways to handle and protect 3D printing designs, Make it LEO is a new startup with an interesting solution.
Make it LEO is the name of the company which aims to enable users to produce “LEO” (or “Limited Edition Object”) files that contain a 3D design with specific instructions on how it can be used.
The way this works is that with a LEO file, you can specify the technologies, materials, colors and even the providers that are compatible with the high-quality design which ensures it is 3D printed exactly as it was designed.
This LEO file controls how many times the design can be 3D printed which is a major benefit for designers. By limiting the number of copies of their file, they can govern the price of the object — and ultimately their income, too.
If a designer is concerned about a poor print reflecting badly on them, for example, a LEO file gives them a high-level of control and prevents any unauthorized reuse of the design.
Make it LEO Offers Peace of Mind
For designers, one subscription allows them to create an unlimited number of LEOs for only €10 (USD$11) per month.
These LEOs can also be deployed on the website for sale and from the consumer side; a file can be purchased but can only be 3D printed by authorized LEO-compatible services. Currently, these services are Shapeways, i.Materialise, and Spark.
During each print, Make it LEO takes a commission of €1 (USD$1.10) per print, and also tracks the activity allowing the designer to review activity statistics too.
After you have purchased your LEO file, you decide who to send the print work to rather than being confined to the website which you chose the file from.
As for whether Make it LEO will catch on, only time will tell, but it seems like a fantastic approach to peace of mind for both designers, customers, and 3D print services.
What do you think of this idea? If you were a designer, would you use it yourself? Let us know in the comments.
License: The text of "Make it LEO: A Secure Way to Handle 3D Design Files" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.