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The MakerBot 3D scanner can bring your real world objects to virtual life

They’ve already made it practical to print three-dimensional computer generated items. Now, MakerBot gives you the ability to do the opposite – scan real objects and convert them to three-dimensional representations on your computer.

The MakerBot 3D scanner doesn’t look like much — an 8-inch turntable with a rectangular plastic bracket behind it. You might even wonder if some parts are missing from the $1400 device, which is available to order today for delivery early next month. But that trim design belies the device’s complexity. And the one-button operation does nothing to show off the sophisticated inner workings of the software. “We’ve taken the time to get the software right and make it easy for people,” said MakerBot CEO Bre Pettis at the scanner’s public unveiling.

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