The do-it-yourself movement is creeping into architecture and city planning. Downloadable open-source plans and information enable individuals and groups to create their own housing
This empowerment also fosters community, as design plans are used both for single homes and public housing projects. Many of the new designs stress environmental sensitivity and economic sustainability. Some software incorporates appliance, furniture and building materials modules. Multiple file formats and user friendliness have attracted architects and designers, as well as non-professionals. Homebuilding know-how could again become common knowledge, as it once was, especially if the resistance of some architects to sharing professional “secrets” can be overcome.