Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Future House Project

The widespread adoption of digital technologies is leading to profound changes in how we communicate with others, shop for goods and services, receive news, manage our finances, learn about the world, participate in politics, deliver and receive medical care, conduct business, manage resources, find entertainment, and maintain autonomy as we age. Increasingly, these activities will take place directly in the home. As our notion of banks, bookstores, universities, communities, and cities change in response to new technologies, the home will take on extraordinary new importance.

The home as it exists today cannot meet these demands or take advantage of new opportunities created by social and technological changes. Most people live in spaces poorly tailored to their needs, and technologies for the home are too often irrelevant gadgets, meeting no fundamental need and developed out of context.

House_n research is focused on how the design of the home and its related technologies, products, and services should evolve to better meet the opportunities and challenges of the future. Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers are investigating methods for merging new technologies with person-centered design. They are generating new ideas, technologies, and methodologies that support the creation of innovative products and services that satisfy the emerging and future needs of people as they live in their homes. This broad research approach is leading to innovative product ideas that are unlikely to be uncovered in more narrowly-focused industries or research endeavors. To facilitate these studies, a unique "living laboratory" residential home research facility called the PlaceLab has been constructed near MIT.

House_n is a multi-disciplinary project lead by researchers at the MIT Department of Architecture. Participants include our industrial sponsors, the MIT Media Lab and other departments at MIT, Intel Research, the Boston Medical Center, Stanford Medical, University of North Carolina School of Public Health, Bensonwood Homes, and CIMIT.

The School of Architecture and Planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology invites interested companies and organizations to participate in this multi-sponsor collaborative effort. Industrial sponsors are encouraged to bring their unique perspective to the project and to participate in this unique exploration of the future of the home with members of complementary industries.

changing visions of the home, rendering by Kent Larson
The changing home, rendering by Kent Larson

New ways to get information about the home and activities in the home to residents, featuring alumni Tyrone Yang and Byron Stigge
New ways to get information about the home, featuring alumni Tyrone Yang and Byron Stigge

Research in real homes, featuring students Joyce Ho and Emmanuel Munguia Tapia
Research in real homes, featuring students Joyce Ho and Emmanuel Munguia Tapia

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