Check out the blog of this team of MIT students. They built this 40 foot tower to win the mini-skyscraper competitionÂ in MIT's Department of Architecture.
Â What value does a moving skyscraper have? Movement allows for improved structural performance under certain conditions. Within this project, actuators were not used for their usual application -- to stabilize a structure -- but instead to bring an interactive element of surprise and fun to our miniskyscraper. Instead of (over)dimensioning for a worst case scenario, the lightweight structure can adapt its geometry to the situation. Such an active response/control would allow for a significant reduction in material use as well as introduce countless new design possibilities.
I guess those MIT kids are kinda smart.