The open source model truly knows no bounds. These days anything can be concocted as an open-source project — from a mobile app to a city. Utilihab steps into the fray with a project to open source new home construction. As defined on the website, “Utilihab is a sophisticated open source modular building system for homes and utility structures that affords for housing the same ease of assembly as a PC, allowing structures of most any size to be built by one to a few people using simple hand tools.”
Envisioned by futurist Eric Hunting and developed by Jonas Allesson, Utilihab utilizes building material from the world of industrial automation - the extruded aluminum T-slot. T-slots are flexible to say the least - they can be used to build machinery, homes, greenhouses, and even factories.
As is often the case when a simple principle is applied to a universal problem, corporations make their move toward proprietary technologies to reap the most profit. Utilihab takes a different tack with its open-source system in hopes that architects, designers, and developers will add their contributions to a pool of designs for the benefit of all.
The Utilihab end-game is a system for building simple, modular, affordable, structurally sound housing to shelter our ever-growing global population. That goal was expressed by designer Constant Nieuwenhuys who hoped someday to see “a new intelligent and dynamic human habitat freely and spontaneously self-adapting to our needs, desires, and environment.” Utilihab is doing its darnedest to see that dream realized.
Toward that end, the project is competing for funding in the second round of a Swedish entrepreneurship contest. They also have plans to crowdfund a prototype house. Check out what they are scheming and lend your vote!