New laser/inkjet printers already encode their serial number into every printed page. I envision the gov’t requiring this of 3D printers as well. Gun Control is Dead, Long Live Gun Control. Just because gov’t looks to be temporarily behind the technological curve, doesn’t mean they’ll stop. The progressives never stop, they’re like frikkin terminators when it comes to individual rights.
@anon – I doubt something like the inkjet printer encoding would be effective in this case. Trying to regulate the printers themselves is a no go. Some of them, like the RepRap, are mostly self-reproducing. There are more expensive printers in turn that can produce the other parts. There’s no central authority for them to control. The only way they could effectively control 3D printers at this point would be an absolute lockdown on the raw materials, which would be… less than effective. And that’s leaving out entirely the issue of subtractive devices like CNC lathes, which have been around for ages. The more they tighten their grip, the more manufacturers will slip through their fingers. And that is, as they say, a goodness thing.