Remember those 3D-printed humanoid figures that emerge from white, viscous ooze in HBO’s Westworld? MIT is doing exactly that – with furniture. They call it Rapid Liquid Printing, and it takes digital manufacturing to a whole new level where printed objects can grow and change on their own.

Rapid Liquid Printing forgoes the layered approach and instead injects 3D-printed substances into a vat of gel that provides support as the shape hardens. Essentially, you could print a large piece of furniture into the gel, let it set, and pull it out fully formed in a matter of minutes.

Related: MIT’s self-assembling chair is really cool, but totally useless (for now)

The process was created in collaboration with Steelcase and MIT’s Self-Assembly Lab, and it can utilize stronger materials than traditional 3D-printing, which is often weak and limited.

Although it is only being used in a limited way right now, imagine how it could change the future of 3D-printing. Could our very own Westworld be far behind?

+ MIT Self Assembly Lab

Images via MIT