Notepad with 3D printingWhile the debate over a name for the process of making objects in an additive manner continues, “additive manufacturing” is losing momentum and “3D printing” is rising to the top. In a previous post, I stated that the winning name will be (or has been) selected by the media and the masses: Easy to say and unambiguous with a hint of something new and innovative.

However, while writing a recent article, I realized that there is a much simpler rationale for “3D printing.” Simply change the suffix and presto — you have output (noun), process (verb) and device (noun). The same is not true for “additive manufacturing.”

Let me prove it.

You can make a 3D print with a 3D printer that uses 3D printing. Now, try that with additive manufacturing: You can make an additive manufactured part with and additive manufacturing machine that use an additive manufacturing process.

As a writer and speaker, it is so much easier and so much more concise to use 3D print, printer and printing. I’m confident that others feel the same way and that human nature (do what’s easiest) will take over.

 

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