Form factors of gem-gum factories

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Special form-factors may be present for special tasks like e.g.

Smaller ones (up to garage door size maybe) could be called "personal gem-gum factories"
larger community controlled ones ones in analogy "mainframe gem-gum factories"
Related topic: Private ownership

Some thought about various form factors

Tablet (portable keyless computer) form-factor

Basically the size of a tablet or a laptop or a school notebook of some sort.
The main point is portability.
A form factor that allows for convenient transport in backpacks.

Usage will often be unplugged.
So one might want to charge up and lug around additional resource cartridges.
These may have the same rectangular form factor except greater thickness to pack more stuff in.
Thick and heavy like a massive book.

Designs that fold up to provide bigger area should be possible
if some more design effort is invested.

Phablet (big smartphone) form-factor

Like the Tablet one just a bit smaller.
For people who want to carry their device in their pants pockets.
This may be sufficiently big for Making some shoes.

This form factor could be called:
"Pants-pockets gem-gum factory".

Standalone photocopier form-factor

These would be located:

  • in every home in one of the main rooms like the living room, the kitchen or an office
  • in public on the side of walkways and streets

All directly and permanently connected to the global microcomponent redistribution system

This direct connection means a vide variety of preassembled microcomponents is readily available leading to very high assembly speeds for all non exotic non super novel products. In cases maybe practically instant assembly for human senses.

Of course one could make just plain faucets for the global microcomponent redistribution system. But almost everywhere will be enough space to add a photocopier sized terminal. If not a standanlone photocopier sized one than at least a tablet/laptop sized one. And if not that than at least the some means for spaning one at the endpoint. like a nametag keyfob form-factor one. This "leaf" may double as kind of a "seed". See further down.

There is also the gem-gum factory that assembled the branch of the microcomponent redistribution system in the first place. But that one might be special in that it has a very different long cylindrical form factor especially optimized for construction of capsule transport wires and digging on the other end. And one might want to remove it / retract it / "suck" it in after wire laying work work is finished to the final branch tips.

Nametag keyfob form-factor

Given the small size and mass there is no harm in carrying such small a device around additionally to one of the tablet form factor ones.

Product size limitations

Unless it's not a foldable or otherwise stretching design the size of the immediate products are quite limited.

Of course it's possible to first assemble bigger (longer) one and proceed with that.

Possible direct products of keyfob form-factor gem-gum factories could include:
(highly random list)

  • smart glasses, small hand input devices
  • knives, spoons, forks, bottle openers
  • writing pens, laser pointers, small hand tools
  • shoe laces, small short ropes and wires
  • jewellery

Energy supply limitations

More critically than size restrictions on products the resource cartridges for raw material and energy may be in-proportionally big. If air as a resource is used to avoid the need for a big cartridge then it will be necessary to procure and supply a considerable amount of energy from local resources.

Quite big but very thin and flexible fold up solar panels could be integrated for providing that energy off grid. Think: small fold up frisbee or very small umbrella. Given the intended location of usage is sufficiently sunny. Ideally direct an high up sun. This will be slow.

Of course it's possible to first very slowly assemble bigger gem-gum factory and much more solar cell area and then proceed with that with much more solar power and speed even in areas that are overclouded/shaddowy. Doing that multistage yields an exponential speedup. That only works to some limit though. If it's simply too dark (completely clouded, underground, in polar night, …) or there is not enough area available for lay out of (self anchoring?) solar cell foil then one obviously needs to look for other energy sources.

  • Manual cranking. This manufacturing keyfob is supposed to be carried by humans after all.
  • Wind power. Seems quite hard to pack something like that down into kefob size. But who knows.
  • Thermal differences. Having some micro-robots (not nano-robots) driving a thin needle into the ground. (low friction solid state heatpump)
  • Exotic inverse solar panels? Exploiting that fact that the cosmic background has a cold temperature of just ~3K

Many of these may make more sense only after a second scaleup-stage
only after some initial scale-up powered by hand-cranking.

All this is especially relevant for a scenario with a more or less global catastrophy where a bunch of geocached gem-gum factories of this form factor could provide a save point for technology.


  • Garage form-factor
  • Shipyard form-factor
  • Housing construction
  • Space construction