You Got to Be Kidding Me!

Set As Default Printer?

Posted in Computers and Software, Urban Planning by Stacy McMahon on September 5, 2008

Ok, this is seriously cool (link via Planetizen) – although some commenters claim it’s the 2nd or 3rd go-round for this idea and have links to that effect.

A researcher at USC is working on a house-sized version of the rapid prototyping (3D printers to you and me) systems that have been commercially available for a few years now. Kind of like the body reconstruction machine in The Fifth Element, the idea is to make the walls of a house one thin layer at a time, with internal galleries (passages) for electrical wire, water and sewer pipes, etc. The system could revolutionize affordable housing.

Something else it could revolutionize is variety in housing. People work more efficiently when they can do ten things over and over the same way, and our subdivisions reflect this. A “house printer” could build a limitless variety of houses one after another, customization just a matter of software. Imagine designing your house in Sketchup and emailing it to the builder. Ok, it’ll always be a little more complicated than that (we like houses to be structurally sound, afterall) but wouldn’t it be nice?

2D Rendering of a 3D Rendering - a House Printer!

2D Rendering of a 3D Rendering - a House Printer!

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