As the great Ferris Bueller once said, "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."
It's getting easy to feel like everything is a bit much these days. Consider the fact that the average size of a new house has ballooned by 41 percent over the last 40 years, despite the average household size shrinking during that same amount of time.
These larger houses require more water and electricity and are much bigger drains on natural resources than their smaller counterparts. In an effort to curb this trend, microhouses offer chic living quarters on a smaller, more sustainable scale.
Best of all, some of these tiny homes can be moved away from the city for relaxing, off-the-grid living. They can also be used to provide extra space for houseguests.
The newest member of this trend is the Ecocapsule, a sleek egg-shaped dwelling developed by the firm Nice Architects in Slovak Republic.
The dwelling looks like an updated version of an Airstream trailer and boasts about 86 square feet of living space. It has a bed, bathroom with shower, kitchenette, and a living/dining area.
While the Ecocapsule does require electricity for the lights, pump, and water heater, it is able to harness the energy from nature itself. The roof is lined with solar panels, which are complemented by a mini wind turbine.
The Ecocapsule's egg-shaped design also helps collect rainwater, which is filtered and serves as the water supply for the house, making it an all-in-one approach for necessary resources.
Aside from the technological aspect, there are style features that make Ecocapsule an inviting living environment.
There is a main door, large windows, and plenty of storage space to stash personal belongings.
If going off the grid as a permanent living arrangement isn't your thing, future incarnations will be transportable by trailer for trips.
There are two different interior trim packages available, based on personal taste.
Of course, like almost all prototypes, there are still a couple of kinks to work out.
Depending on the location and time of year, collecting rainwater might not be enough to meet the full water needs and will need to be supplemented.
There's also the issue of what to do about the grey water: is the filtration system powerful enough to recycle it? Could it be composted?
Either way, it's an impressive start, and these drawbacks are far from insurmountable.
Ready to get your hands on one?
The prototype will be revealed to the public for the first time later this week at the Pioneers Festival in Vienna. The price point of the Ecocapsule is set to be released by the end of the year, and the first orders will be shipped in the first half of 2016.
The design for the transportable camper variety will be completed next year.