Smart Bricks: Giant Lego-like blocks for buildings




Adapt it to fly-eye geodesic domes and I’M SOLD.


I can’t see building contractors being too happy with this. Building robots versus disgruntled builders with power tools and bulldozers… LET’S GET READY TO RUUUUUUUUUMBLE!


Easy solution. Just add a sentrygun to the bot.


Seems like a cool system for building the walls of a building, but the floors are a different matter.

In my experience, floors are supported by unbroken structural elements, such as joists or concrete slabs, that are supported on both sides by structural load-bearing walls.

Having the floor made of separate blocks, even if they are tied together with rebar or something similar, seems less structurally sound.

However, if joists were included in this new building system, it seems like a faster and easier way to get the job done.


Will I need shoes with a hole in the bottom?


Yes, unless you are barefoot. Then you’ll need holes in your soles.


“For the first time in a 150 years”

Interesting grammar there.

James May did a show where they built a house out of Lego. Those were small bricks so maybe the problems they encountered wouldn’t be as big of an issue with the larger concrete blocks shown here, but there were some serious problems.

Also, what makes this better than regular concrete blocks? The animation shows the robot putting down what looks like a metal pole and putting something like mortar on each layer.

The claims at the end seem just fucking ridiculous. “Zero Energy Building”, “70% less construction costs”, “80% less construction time”, “Lower energy bills”, “Clean and quiet construction site”.


Hey, you don’t need to actually have tangible benefits - you just need to claim them, then rake in the cash from a successful kickstarter!

I mean, just look at the success of those “Solar Roadway” guys, who came up with a concept that is fundamentally flawed on so many levels as to be laughable to people with even a modest understanding of engineering, but who successfully marketed their snake oil nonsense to the gullible masses to the tune of millions of dollars! If they invest wisely and live modestly, those kids are set for life - and they didn’t have to do any real work!


The blocks can be factory finished, maybe even inside and outside so that is an advantage over concrete. Also, these bricks have built in access to plumbing and electrical, something that I don’t think cement blocks can do at all without causing structural problems.


I like the built-in access for infrastructure. I would love if removable wall-panels become standard; adding some more wiring as needed, without having to dig into walls (brick walls, not those flimsy American-style almost-paper “walls”), would then be a breeze.


Hmm, your real name isn’t Harry Tuttle is it?


Looks like that machine is gluing the blocks together. Have these people learned nothing from The LEGO Movie?


Wait wait wait… the first time in 150 years, a real revolution in the way we build? I guess the Bauhaus wasn’t revolutionary enough? And Corbu was a lewser? The only revolution I see here is the one all the laid-off construction guys are gonna start.


No, I am Harry Buttle and this is all just a big misunderstanding!


What about this cartoon reassures you these bricks won’t also have structural problems when one face is carved out to make room for laying pipes and wires?


oh, yay, neo-brutalism. :frowning:


I anticipate we’ll be 3D printing these pretty soon.


Injection moulding is way faster and cheaper. But only for large series of identical objects. Which these “bricks” are.

3D printing is there too, though, for custom bricks with shapes that are not available in the high-volume production.


I’d be impressed if the bricks could disassembled and reused like lego.