Creating the Next Smart Home

Solar panels and tiles glint in the Southern California sun, as visitors meander down a block of modular houses in the middle of a large open space in Irvine.

This is the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Decathlon, an event that pits 19 college teams against each other in the quest to build the most energy efficient -- but still affordable -- home. This year is the first time the solar decathlon has taken place outside of Washington D.C.

"You can really tell a lot of blood, sweat and tears went into building these houses," said Olivier Glaser, after he finished touring some of the homes. "It's really awe-inspiring and it makes me look forward to the future of architecture and home building. It gives you a little glimpse of what we can expect in the coming years."

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