3D printings of your WOW avatar

Following on this morning post about the connection between bruce sterling's shaping things and game design, I ran across this very interesting project about doing 3D prints of Second Life or World of Warcraft avatars. It's based on eyebeam's OGLE project

OGLE (i.e. OpenGLExtractor) is a software package by Eyebeam R&D that allows for the capture and re-use of 3D geometry data from 3D graphics applications running on Microsoft Windows. It works by observing the data flowing between 3D applications and the system's OpenGL library, and recording that data in a standard 3D file format. In other words, a 'screen grab' or 'view source' operation for 3D data. The primary motivation for developing OGLE is to make available for re-use the 3D forms we see and interact with in our favorite 3D applications. Video gamers have a certain love affair with characters from their favorite games; animators may wish to reuse environments or objects from other applications or animations which don't provide data-level access; architects could use this to bring 3D forms into their proposals and renderings; and digital fabrication technologies make it possible to automatically instantiate 3D objects in the real world.

Example: 3D-printing your World of Warcraft character:

It can also be used to put avatars as mash-ups in Google Earth. Check their blog to stay tuned.

Why do I blog this? this is another interesting step towards having new artifacts generated after virtual content, like for spimes. It opens lots of possibilities (especially if the avatars can be tagged). I'd be interested in printing my nintendogs, putting an arphid on it and leaving it in geneva... and see what happen... especially if there could be some interactions with people passing by (with their cell phones)....