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My Pal Foot Foot

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New York’s Sols is using 3D printing for more than just hobbyists

Considering the wildly mixed reactions elicited by the human foot, it’s a bit surprising the tech world has allowed those unsightly extremities to go ignored for so long (aside from a few… specialist interest sites that is).

New York’s Sols is using 3D printing and imaging tech to create custom shoe inserts that minimize foot pain and enhance performance. Launched in May 2013, the company shipped its first round of software to a group of beta testers last Friday.

“I spent two years running a factory for Shapeways in New York, wearing high heels and stilettos most of the time,” cofounder and CEO Kegan Schouwenburg told us, “so this was something on my mind.

“And I also wanted to know why 3D printing was still in the hobbyist sector. How do we turn this into custom mass production that will resonate not just with a small niche, but with everybody?”

But Sols is more than a 3D printing play. The eight-person team has built a diagnostic scanning tool for iOS devices that orthopedists use to image patients’ feet. In addition to that, they’ve created mathematical modeling software that generates an image of the orthotics to be printed by facilities in Texas.

“We’ve managed to do it with a small team because we’ve hired for very specific skill sets – everybody owns their component,” Schouwenburg said. “Also I don’t sleep at all.”

Sols is actively looking for computer graphics experts, engineers, and product specialists. Get details and get in touchhere.

Now go forth (and step on it).

Nitty Gritty:

1969: Year the Shaggs releasedPhilosophy of the World, featuring My Pal Foot Foot

1980: Year Rolling Stone called it “the worst album ever recorded”

5: Rank of the album among Kurt Cobain’s favorite ever

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