NASA's Morpheus Lander went for a test flight the other day. The concept is similar to that of the Grasshopper launch a few months back.
Should we remake Mars in "our own image"? This article asks that question, albeit from a terraforming perspective. There are numerous assumptions in the article but I believe there is far more at stake here than just changing the climate of a planet. Besides all sorts of colonization issues, many people would also have designs on remaking Mars in their own societal, religious, and political images. Along those lines, what is a person's definition of "Eden"? Compare that with the Biblical definition of Eden and what it meant when God made humans in His own image (Genesis 1:26-27).
And finally, here's a short nanotech video that introduces a concept called "genius materials"...or materials that can self-assemble themselves on a nano level (as opposed to "smart" materials). Research is ongoing in this field aboard the ISS.