The shovel, the pale, and the subsequent sandcastle seem to fade into antiquity in light of this world-building robot, running on nothing but the humble sun—and a laptop. The Stone Spray Project, in its early stages, mixes a liquid binding compound and sand to sculp arches or stools over scaffolding, but the idea is to eventually build human-scale structures—just like the time before the massive, world-mining forgings of iron, brick, and steel. The team writes on their homepage:
“We want to push further the boundaries of digital manufacturing and explore the possibilities of an on-site fabrication machine.”
The virtual sandboxes of Minecraft or From Dust, if not more modest ancient civilizations, look like blueprints for the world this robot inspires us to build. After all, will land-art become utility?