|An example of real object replication.|
You can see how this process could be used to duplicate your favorite toys, but if any of you are scientists, you could use this technology to create exact replicas of fragile artifacts to display in museums.
But how does it work?
There are many ways to 3D scan an object, some are more expensive, some are faster, but it all depends on your object's shape and size.
Here came the Microsoft's Kinect. People saw the opportunity right away and hacked it into a 3D scanner. The more Kinects you connect together, the more detailed images you get. I would like to share two videos I found that produce 3D images using kinect. The first one also demos what you can do with a 3D printer:
The second one demostrates a DIY Kinect-powered turntable, which I thought was kind of cool.
There are more and more useful Kinect hacks which you can find on Youtube and which will definitely blow your mind.
All in all, 3D scanning is a very useful technology, not just in object replication, but also in medicine. 3D scanners can help doctors see the detailed insides of your body (brain, heart, etc.), or pregnant women to see their unborn children in 3D (3D ultrasound).