DARPA wants to change this. Smart homes of the future won’t just be smart in the sense that it communicates with itself, but will also be capable of repairing itself by using living structural materials. That’s the plan, at least.
“DARPA is launching the Engineered Living Materials (ELM) program with a goal of creating a new class of materials that combines the structural properties of traditional building materials with attributes of living systems. Living materials represent a new opportunity to leverage engineered biology to solve existing problems associated with the construction and maintenance of built environments, and to create new capabilities to craft smart infrastructure that dynamically responds to its surroundings.”
Photo Credit: DARPA
Long-term wise, the ELM program seeks to engineer structural properties directly into the genomes of biological systems. In doing so, these systems won’t need to rely on non-biological building materials to acquire desired shapes and properties.
In the world of tomorrow, your future smart home won’t just be able to communicate with you and know what you’re thinking, but will also ensure its own optimal condition over a lengthy period of time. Whenever it becomes damaged, it will assess its integrity and design layout and begin self-repairs immediately. Whenever there is a flood or some other natural calamity that occurs which damages your home, it will realize the extent of damage done and take steps to fix it soon thereafter. As a result, the very concept of housing insurance will become non-existent.