If will.i.am is right with his prediction, the future of 3-D printing could be more creepy than cool.
The Black Eyed Peas frontman also serves as the “chief creative officer” of the 3-D printing company, 3D Systems. Rolling Stone reports he’s seen the company’s work firsthand, including turning recyclables into clothes and bicycles, but that he has other, scarier ideas about the future of the business.
“I’m going to say something controversial,” the rapper said. “Eventually 3D printing will print people. That’s scary. So right now we can print in post-consumer plastics, which is awesome. We can print in aluminum, which is bigger machines and awesome. We can print in titanium, which is pretty freaking crazy and amazing. We can print in steel, which is freaking hardcore. You can print in chocolate, and that’s sweet. You can print in freaking protein; you can make freaking meat. You can print leather. You can print a liver. So if you can print a liver or a kidney. God dang it, you’re going to be able to print a whole freaking person. And that’s scary.”
And he may have a point. Scientists have already used 3-D printers to build organs out of living cells. That technology isn’t just a Grey’s Anatomy story line anymore — in fact, will.i.am thinks we’ll see the ability to print entire humans become a reality within our lifetime. The time to prepare for that, he says, is now.
“So unfortunately that is the reality, but at the same time it pushes humanity to have to adhere to new responsibilities, new morals,” he explained. “New lessons are going to have to be implemented. For real. Now we’re getting into a whole new territory. I don’t know what year it was, Moses comes down with the Ten Commandments and says ‘Thou shalt not…’ He didn’t say shit about 3D printing. Humans — as great as we are — are pretty irresponsible. Ask the planet. Ask the environment.”