Liam Dippenaar is a 5-year-old who was born without fingers on his right hand due to a rare condition called amniotic band syndrome. His mother approached Ivan Owen, a puppeteer who had invented a robotic hand that mimics the motion of a real hand, to see if he could construct something similar for her son. As NPR explains:
When Owen flew back to the United States, he wondered if the device could be turned into printable parts.
So he emailed MakerBot, a firm that makes 3-D printing equipment, to see if the company would help out. It did, offering both Owen and Van As a free 3-D printer. "Then there was no stopping us," Van As says.