Staff picks for the week of Aug. 3, 2015

Staff Picks GeneralLike the people who use it, technology constantly evolves. Today’s staff picks show just how far it’s come in the last decade.

The evolution of Windows startup sounds, from Windows 3.1 to 10 (Read by Nick G.)

For years Windows users heard a distinct sound every time they started their computers. But the times are changing, and this startup music has been cut from the new version of Windows. Whether you’re sad or overjoyed, take a walk down memory lane with Mashable and enjoy the nostalgia.

Today’s Kids Have No Idea How the First iPod Worked (Read by Heidi B.)

It seems like it was yesterday that I got my first iPod, so it’s hard to believe that today’s kids don’t know how to use the click wheel device that was such a big innovation at the time. In this video, you’ll see kids tinkering with a first generation iPod and the confusion that follows — the lack of a touch screen and the music-only functionality boggles the minds of these little ones. It’s amazing how quickly technology has advanced; less than 10 years ago we were taught how to use a touch screen, yet today’s youngsters have never known life without it. It makes me wonder what tech will be like 10 years from now.

The US Navy is 3D-printing custom drones on its ships (Read by Camillia S.)

The U.S. Navy is combining two of the trendiest technologies to make drone missions easier for sailors at sea. Naval ships will leave for sea with the necessary parts to make a drone (like motors, controllers, and GPS units) but the body of the device will be emailed, printed, and assembled on board. With more ships being equipped with 3D printers for medical supplies, it seems like custom 3D-printed drones are the next wave for Navy missions.

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3 ways organizations can use 3D printing today

3D printers3D printers have moved from industrial labs and hobbyists’ basements to the mainstream: Worldwide shipments of 3D printers are expected to reach more than 217,000 in 2015, and then double every year thereafter. Vendors continue to refine their products, making them smaller, less expensive, easier to use, and more accessible for businesses and consumers alike.

In case you’ve never seen one in action, 3D printers expand on the concept of a standard ink-jet printer by adding a third axis that enables both vertical and horizontal printing. This capability offers immediate appeal to hobbyists and designers, but amidst the hype for 3D-printed fashion accessories, 3D-printed cars, and 3D printers in space, many organizations are still struggling to determine what, if any, practical 3D printing applications exist for their business.

Look no further. Here are three tangible ways organizations can utilize 3D printers today: Continue Reading…