Digital Media: Life-Changing Online. Creative Section

Thingiverse: Archive and Enabler


  • Ursula Hurley The University of Salford



Thingiverse is an open-source website, showcasing the capabilities of 3D printers ( Hosted by Makerbot Industries, one of the largest manufacturers of 3D printers, the site encourages users to share designs under a Creative Commons license. In excess of one million designs have been uploaded to date, ranging from the practical to the frivolous. Blueprints for customisable prosthetic limbs are shared alongside cup-holders and mischievous re-workings of well known cartoon characters. The site is structured like a fairly standard online community, with professional curators and peer-to-peer comment, with no restrictions on use beyond what is legal.

Author Biography

Ursula Hurley, The University of Salford

Ursula Hurley is Senior Lecturer in English and Creative Writing at the University of Salford. She works critically and creatively in experimental and innovative auto/biographical practices, ranging from historical, fictionalized narratives to digitally fabricated artifacts. She is in the process of completing a book-length project on disability and digital fabrication. Email:





Digital Media: Life-Changing Online. Creative Section