In particular, you should go read yesterday's post about the coming third industrial revolution. I've written on this topic many times, usually calling it convergence. (This is a good example...this is a little more indirectly related, but if you haven't seen the kitchen cutting board AR, you should). As I usually do, here's a money quote to whet your interest so you go RTWT;
The other day I was speaking with the owner of what could be called a 'job shop' in Asia. His company does short production runs of things. Metal fabrication, machining, firearms, and other things are made in his 100 man shop.Folks, this thing I call convergence is coming and it's coming at breakneck pace.
The owner of the company has a hobby of 3D printing and building desktop milling machines.
The conversation turned to how soon his shop would become obsolete with the rise of small bespoke manufacturing shops.
He speculated that he had about 10 years maximum before his type of manufacturing shop will be replaced.
This is convergence, the new industrial revolution. With the advance of personal fabrication - the intersection of home CNC, 3D printing, continually more powerful digital electronics, what's called the Maker movement, it is literally getting to the point where you will be able to buy anything you need to make any gun you want. Dimensioned drawings for the AR family lowers are online; it doesn't take much to turn those into tool paths. The open source movement will provide that. To use the cliche' again, "you can't stop the signal".Ares Armor polymer lower, with color coded area to remove. The new ones are even cooler.)