Disney have just released the first images of a novel 3D printing technology that they are developing.
Now 3D printing is not a brand new thing, but the innovation that Disney has created is the ability to embed fibre optic type tubes within printed models, which allows for some very interesting light effects to be incorporated. The firm's researchers say that 3D printers can create objects with "micron accuracy" that would otherwise be more complicated and costly to build.
A paper published by the entertainment giant's Pittsburgh labs details prototypes already created including a bug-like figure with glowing eyes that display different graphics; chess set pieces that use light to display information about their position on the board; and blocks of plastic that appear to show explosions inside when light is shone at them.
I am sure we will see lots of franchised toys employing this new technology in the not too distant future.