CIRAS DIGEST: Tuesday, May 24, 2016

  • ICYMI, The Des Moines Register thinks a “slumping farm economy” has spawned a “merger mania.”
  • Also, Cognizant Technology Solutions announced that it plans to hire more than 1,000 workers to work out of downtown Des Moines. KCCI-TV quotes people calling it “a tremendous boost” for the downtown economy.
  • A Forbes contributor tried earlier this week to forecast the state of manufacturing for 2016-2017. There are some charts, but most of the information is build into the lede: “Manufacturing is weak in the United States, with a so-so outlook for the next few years. Some sectors will certainly grow, and the best-run companies in lagging sectors can usually do well. The overall picture, though, is not pretty.”
  • And while we’re at it, here’s a quote from another Forbes contributor who was asked to assess what the future looks like both for his company and 3-D printing in general: “I don’t know what the technology will look like in three years, but it will be substantially better than where it is today, and the rate of innovation will be substantially higher as well. We’re starting to see the creation of value, and I’m positive that 3D printing has an enormous future. With a lot of the initial hype behind us, I think the landscape right now is analogous to the end of winter, when it seems like nature is dead. In reality, under the soil so many things are happening. Within weeks, the trees are suddenly green again, the flowers are up and blooming, and you wonder, “Where did that come from?”
  • The past week saw a slew of 3-D printing stories, including an anouncment by HP that it will produce something it’s billing as “the world’s first production-ready commercial 3-D printer.” A Bloomberg story quotes the company as saying its new system will print 10 times faster at half the cost.
  • Just because it’s cool, apparently, ComputerWorld has a story about 3-D printers in space.
  • And finally, to round out the theme, here’s a story we published last week about a Cresco company that, after seeking CIRAS’ advice, decided to enter the 3-D printing world as a compliment to its machine shop business.

Thanks for reading.

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