MIT's media lab compares it to a "real-life Transformer" — a highly adaptable, infinitely scalable machine that can assume almost any shape imaginable. It's called the Milli-Motein. Think of it as programmable matter, the latest development in the growing digital fabrication revolution.
The line that separates the biological world from the synthetic one is growing ever-fainter, as each sphere borrows more and more tricks from the other's playbook. In September, researchers announced the development of an electronic implant that can dissolve completely inside your body. Last month, a man climbed America's tallest skyscraper with the world's first neurally controlled prosthetic leg. Now, researchers inspired by structural biochemistry are working to design shapeshifting robots that could, in theory, assume almost any form imaginable.