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Publisher's Summary

This audiobook narrated by Christopher Ragland delivers a manifesto for the dawning age of active materials.

Things in life tend to fall apart. Cars break down. Buildings fall into disrepair. Personal items deteriorate. Yet today's researchers are exploiting newly understood properties of matter to program materials that physically sense, adapt, and fall together instead of apart. These materials open new directions for industrial innovation and challenge us to rethink the way we build and collaborate with our environment. Things Fall Together is a provocative guide to this emerging, often mind-bending reality, presenting a bold vision for harnessing the intelligence embedded in the material world.

Drawing on his pioneering work on self-assembly and programmable material technologies, Skylar Tibbits lays out the core, frequently counterintuitive ideas and strategies that animate this new approach to design and innovation. From furniture that builds itself to shoes printed flat that jump into shape to islands that grow themselves, he describes how matter can compute and exhibit behaviors that we typically associate with biological organisms, and challenges our fundamental assumptions about what physical materials can do and how we can interact with them. Intelligent products today often rely on electronics, batteries, and complicated mechanisms. Tibbits offers a different approach, showing how we can design simple and elegant material intelligence that may one day animate and improve itself - and along the way help us build a more sustainable future.

Compelling and beautifully designed, Things Fall Together provides an insider's perspective on the materials revolution that lies ahead, revealing the spectacular possibilities for designing active materials that can self-assemble, collaborate, and one day even evolve and design on their own.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio. 

©2021 Skylar Tibbits (P)2021 Princeton University Press

Critic Reviews

"Things Fall Together is a revolutionary book that helps us see into the future. Skylar Tibbits provides new design possibilities that rely on biological principles to activate materials into self-assembly. His pioneering approach is exactly what we need for Mars exploration and other space missions." (Dava Newman, Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

"This book offers invaluable insights into a highly influential body of research that promises to have a major impact on the discourse of architecture. Things Fall Together is a fascinating read." (Neil Leach, coeditor of Digital Tectonics)

"In this book, Tibbits proposes a future where artificial intelligence is not an end in itself but an embodied feature of the products that we make. It is a future that is more humane precisely because of the shared tactility and materiality of stuff. There is no doubt in my mind that the future of materials science lies in the development of the types of animate matter described in this book." (Mark Miodownik, author of Stuff Matters)

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