Click, print, shoot: Downloadable guns possible
Some involved in the development of the technology are now worried the gun project might spur regulations that will hurt or curtail their projects, he added.
Early schematics created by Wilson’s group were posted on Thingiverse, a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based website that serves as a hub for 3-D printing aficionados. After the school shooting, Thingiverse took down the links.
Spokeswoman Jenifer Howard said the focus of the website is ‘‘to empower the creative process and make things for good.’’
Thingiverse’s terms of service state the site cannot be used to share content that contributes to the creation of weapons.
Wilson said his group has posted the links to the schematics on its own website.
Paul Saffo, a Silicon Valley technology forecaster who teaches at Stanford University’s engineering school, said the Defense Distributed work carries on a tradition of tech geeks using innovation to make a political point, in this case on gun control and Second Amendment freedom.
‘‘If you want to get people’s attention in Washington, you say something. If you want to do it in Silicon Valley, you make something,’’ Saffo said.
He said the technology exists now for a highly motivated group to make a plastic gun on a 3-D printer that could avoid airport scanners. But the equipment is still too expensive for most people.
‘‘Nobody right now needs to worry about the bright teenager making a gun on a printer in their bedroom,’’ he said.
Freelance video producer Jay Olivier contributed to this report from Austin, Texas.
Jason Dearen can be reached on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/JHDearen