By continuing to use the site you agree to our Privacy & Cookies policy

Your browser seems to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser.

Close

Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Close

One small blob for starters, one giant leap for Mankind in due course

Ian Martin develops the revolutionary building material Kryptogel

Monday. Big week ahead for me and my old friend Beansy, the nanofuturologist. The patent for our latest invention is imminent.

It builds on the theoretical success of ‘hard air’, a revolutionary building material we came up with a couple of years ago and then shelved for commercial and legal reasons. It seems so primitive now: add ‘lumpening hydrates’ to ordinary air, thereby ‘caging’ the molecular structure via omnilateral desublimation. It was the
perfect sustainable local material. Air is everywhere in the world, duh.

But the sceptics and the haters killed it off, saying it was too mad an idea, too ‘fictional’. Despite the massive ‘hard air’ table we were DOING THE PRESS CONFERENCE AT. Idiots! This time, we’ll be stealthier.

Tuesday. Great, the patent’s gone through. Beansy and I now own the rights to ‘Kryptogel’.

Essentially, it’s hard air infused with nanogel and krypton. I mentioned to Beansy that these were the top two Google search results for ‘innovative building material’ and wondered aloud how you might combine them. Boom - he’d cooked up the first batch in his nanotechnology lab by teatime.

You ask what Kryptogel can do. I answer with a silvery laugh: what CAN’T it do? It’s so light you can hardly feel it, so translucent you can barely see it. So malleable and versatile you could craft a model of the Palace of Versailles from it. So tough you could get an elephant to stand on that model of Versailles and it wouldn’t even buckle. This is because Kryptogel molecules form ‘geotastic non-bucklyballs’ when the material is in its inert state. It looks like phantom frogspawn, without the tadpole dots.

It’s much less accommodating in its exciteable state, although it is incredibly squashable. You can compress enough Kryptogel to build a bungalow into a lump the size of a takeaway pizza, though OK fair enough it would be one of those Family Feast ones.

From now on it’s plain sailing, specification-wise, for the world’s epic space community. Kryptogel is going to change everything.

Wednesday. Beansy and I bring very different skills to the Kryptogel skills matrix. Rock Steady Eddie the fixer also brings his rugged take on things, to a late lunch at the pub.
‘So. How much of this fancy polystyrene would you need to make a decent sized eco-town?’ Beansy says that would require a proper manufacturing plant and blah blah logistics, who cares, I’ve drifted off to get another round. When I get back Eddie’s already ‘tickled up some geezers on the blower’ and it very much looks like we’ll be licensing the manufacturing rights.
Kryptogel is GO.

Thursday. Meeting with two guys from Global Profiles, a patent clearing house for the world’s construction community. After some small talk, mostly me and Beansy making the same self-deprecating joke about getting older and having a global profile ourselves these days, ha ha, the contracts appear.

For a five-year exclusivity deal, a certain well-known manufacturer will pay us a small amount up front. However, we get a massive cut of profits from any Kryptogel-based development. And given that the possibilities are endless and the science proven, we are clearly going to be millionaires by the end of the year. Kryptogel affordable housing, here it comes. Kryptogel skyscrapers, hospitals, bridges… Beansy lowers his voice and produces a blueprint for a lunar shuttle packed with - and made of - ‘Kryptogel Plus’.

Enough raw material for a large town on the Moon, virtually weightless, a negligible payload. Kryptogel could open up the entire fucking GALAXY for the human race! Tim and Dan from Global Profiles keep their excitement under control and countersign the contracts.

Friday. Oh dear. It now seems unlikely that the galaxy will be remodelled in Kryptogel any time soon. Global Profiles bought the rights in order to suppress its use by anyone. Apparently the concrete and steel people are not very happy about a virtually zero-cost alternative.

Still, on the bright side, Rock Steady Eddie’s earned an undisclosed ‘handling fee’ and Beansy and I have made enough to develop his matter transporter beyond the beta version. Not before time: we’ve already lost 15 cats to the capricious laws of physics.

Saturday. Beansy and I transform into our exciteable states for a night out on the non-Kryptogel town.

Sunday. Return to my inert state in the recliner.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment.

The searchable digital buildings archive with drawings from more than 1,500 projects

AJ newsletters