WikiHouse is an open source construction which aims to allow anyone to design, download and "print" computer numerical control (CNC) milled houses and components which can be assembled with minimal formal skill or training.
Houses are designed by an open community of designers around the world who license their work under CC BY SA licences.
House builders can then generate complete sets of milling drawings from Google Sketchup and cut them through standard 18 mm plywood using a CNC mill. Building material is locally sourced.
Assembling doesn't need any power tools as houses are assembled like a double-layered jigsaw using only bolts and connectors.
Once the plywood structure is made, insulation, cladding, sealing and services can be added.
It is the first time open data is applied to architecture. Open software and open hardware projects exist, but WikiHouse is the first project that applies open principles to locally-sourced and cost-effective house building.
Open-sourced hardware and software projects like this democratize architecture and make it accessible to everybody. Consumption was democratized in the 20th century. Now it's production turn.
The project gained visiblity when it won the TED City 2.0 prize in 2012. Local WikiHouse projects have been stemming up from the initial project. WikiHouse Rio, which aims at building wikihouses in Rio favelas, is a good example.