With more homes on the market, perhaps buyers can even have a choice of architectures, layouts, or other crazy details.
Relax for a moment and try to visualize your dream house. Is it a Tudor? A Victorian? A Mediterranean? A Cape Cod? A Ranch with a prominent garage?
What do you like about that dream house? What do you hate about other styles?
Do you prefer an attached garage or a detached one? What is the ideal size? How important are energy-saving features?
Just keep imagining your dream house and it will come to you*.
*Not Law of Attraction advice :)
-- Peter P
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FollowBefriend (4)117 threads17,655 comments
What is small?
If I cannot extend my arms and spin around in the bathroom, it is too small. I am not a fan of overly-large homes, but a bedroom should comfortably accommodate a king-sized bed, nightstands, a dresser, and a daybed.
I do not want more than 2 bedrooms. But I want an office AND a library.
>Simply reciting junior high school physics doesn’t make the possibility of >water powered locomotion go away
Yes it does. Junior high school physics need to be completely rewritten in order to accomodate water powered locomotion. It is not a mere innovation we are talking about, it's a complete revision of human knowledge about the world around us. While I am all for that kind of breakthrough it has to be based on something solid (just like Einstein's theory of relativity was based on facts and observations that were not completely covered by classical physics).
As much as I share your desire for cheap and clean energy the second law of thermodynamics is stronger than both of us.
Let's settle on more realistic goals - like orbital power arrays or mega-kite windfarms.
Or Dyson Sphere.
Dyson shell (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dyson_sphere) is our ultimate goal! In addition to full energy output of the Sun we'll have a nice bonus -real estate agents will be having hard time arguing that they don't make more land when you have 600 million Earth surfaces to build on :)
Yes, energy is there. We just need to harness it.
Similarly, abundance is everywhere. We just need to attract it.
Genepax "news" have been debunked several times since they were announced. The only difference between their announcement and thousands other nutcases is that they managed to dupe major news agancy into believing them (it happens sometimes). Either that or Reuters managed to omit the fact that the car has an additional power source (gasoline or electric engine).
Yes, I've posted here before, why?
FollowBefriend4 threads1,056 comments Boise, ID
Freeman Dyson was a bigwig in the Manhatten Project IIRC.
A small house is ideal.
It would be interesting to see what people here consider a "small house". My house in Cambrian Park SJ was only 1,040 square feet and was too small even for a single guy like me. My new home here in Boise is approx. 1,985 square feet which fits me just about right. The master bath has a separate large "Roman orgy" tub and walk-in shower which should satisfy the "Peter principle". :)
RE: Peter principle
Well, with a market like this the growth in home square footage will soon peter out...
Google -> "Genepax hoax".
Detailed explanation of why it can't work :
I can provide more links, the story is fresh but bloggers are faster nowadays then traditional news outlets.
What unusual features will your dream home have?
FollowBefriend (4)44 threads4,602 comments Los Altos, CA
Here is my Zillow rant about the absolutely worst "best" house you've ever seen. And it's only $5.5mm. Click through, you won't believe it. Trust me. (The link is in my first comment on there).
And on topic ...
I like the speedingpullet's house, its "green" side anyway. Solar panels, windmill and my own well were always on top of my list. With enough money and a bit of imagination you can easily build your own "platinum LEED" house, especially in California, where sun energy is abundant.
What is that? LEGO blocks?
If you scroll down, someone later posted a NYT article about that house which gets even more bizarre. Be sure to scroll through all the pics. Unbelievable. Trust me, you've never seen anything like that. It makes the Winchester House look reasonable.
If I am allow to dream (and be bizarre), I want my own 6000x100 landing strip.
I have found a way to cope with high gas price:
Every night, before you sleep, force yourself into believing that gas is now at $10/gallon.
Next morning, when you drive by the station, you will be pleasantly surprised at the dirt cheap gas price: only $4.99/gallon!!
FollowBefriend4 threads1,479 comments Hampton, VA
If I am allow to dream (and be bizarre), I want my own 6000×100 landing strip.
6,000 ft? Just what type of plane do you plan to get? 3000x50 is sufficient for a Cessna/Piper/Mooney/Beech, and you need at least 8,000 ft for any type of jet.
I remember from the old days when planes were cheap how some housing communities had a central airstrip, and the home owners had hanger/garages attached to the houses.
and you need at least 8,000 ft for any type of jet.
Sedona has a 5129x100 runway. Jets go there all the time (including larger ones like GLF4's and Falcon 2000's). The airport has an elevation close to 5000 ft and the air temperature there is often way over ISA.
At sea level, ISA, even a 737 BBJ needs less than 6000 ft of runway at maximum weight.
Technology really has come a long way.
Gnoss Field in Marin has a tiny 3300x75 runway, and 11 jets are based there.
Hopefully, the GA industry will have a meaningful comeback.
At the high-end, I heard jets are sold out for the next several years. Micro jets are hot-selling too.
The real interesting question is, how can we profit from excess wealth?
FollowBefriend4 threads2,252 comments
FWIW here is the link to the Genepax site showing their novel fuel cell. If it does indeed work, some folks think a high energy catalyst (which degrades) is necessary.
I'm actually quite bullish on hydrogen injection in conventional ICEs. This can be anything from hydrogen produced from gasoline using a high energy plasma (R&D) to metallic hydroxide(?) fuels that use waste heat from the engine to release hydrogen. Hydrogen injected into a combustion chamber produces a more efficient fuel burn. Currently on the market today, there are retrofit electolysis units which can increase fuel efficiency (~10%) in long haul trucks or older less efficient diesel vehicles (like a late model Mercedes).
FollowBefriend1 threads533 comments
After a few threads of thoughtful and (to my mind) accurate posts, why marginalize yourself with such insanity?
It is okay to dare to dream. All of us want a breakthru. But, umm, this isn't it.
Look, beyond my 'quoting junior high pysics' lies even more physics.
There are a ton of interesting candidates out there for cheap clean energy - my favorite of which would be fusion. If we give up torroidal magnetic containment for super-heated plasmas, and try something more original like inertial pellet feeds that are lazed for a sorta-pulse-fusihion we may get our breakthru in my lifetime.
CERN is likely to prove parts of string theory as we are devising experiments that will prove particles jumping to higher dimmensional spaces - and heck that 'may' be useful in energyproduction.
We are creating better and better thin film coatings as well as doping compunds to get higher and higer Solar Array effecienecies.
And yes, there are gas saving improvements. As there are in other technologies. The real problem with all of these ideas s that they are not cost effective. And thus they are not pursued. As gas raised the bar of what is economical we will dust off old ideas and retest the market with them.
But please, lose the conspiracy thought that the oil sheiks or the secret societies are killing great energy ideas. The only thing killing good ideas is economics. Any maybe bad policy about research in the US.
FollowBefriend (2)34 threads3,585 comments
Sorry, but energy does not just "happen". It really is THE most fundamental law of nature (physics) that the energy content of a closed system is constant, and that the energy of a closed system cannot be created nor destroyed, only be transformed into other forms of energy,
This seemingly very simple law has all kinds of consequences, some very obvious and some more deep. One of the obvious ones is that converting 2*H2O into 2*H2 + 1*O2 cannot be accomplished without reducing the energy content of some other part of your system, for example the content of the fuel tank or the fuel of a nuclear reactor.
You could say that the most basic law of physcis is that "you cannot get something for nothing, energy-wise".
The general public is unfortunately woefully unaware of this basic law of nature.
Not to TOB in particular: In the grand scheme of things, all we can do on earth is the following:
1. exploit the internal energy inherent in the mass of the earth (nuclear energy)
2. exploit the internal energy stored/collected from solar energy (fossile fuels)
3. collect solar energy (directly or indirectly, as mentioned earlier, rainfall and wind is indirect solar energy, so is plants, trees, biofuels, what have you.).
That's it. There are no other sources. The sun is a gigantic nuclear reactor itself, and all the energy it expels into space comes from reducing the internal energy of its elements through nuclear reactions. On our side, we view the sun as "renewable energy source" because the sunshine keeps coming and we may as well collect it and use it. Sunshine
is a use-it-or-loose-it energy source. Oil is a use-it-or-preserve-it-for-future-generations energy source.
What we humans need to concentrate on is
1. efficient ways of collecting/transforming existing energy sources
2. reducing the usage of non-renewable energy sources
Energy cannot be invented, Methods of collecting and transforming energy can be invented, but only within the laws of physics.
Short term, I think the best solution is
1. no more big cars
2. clean diesel engines
3. diesel-electric hybrids
4. please, no hydrogen cars
5. ease up on the plug-in hybrids, they really are only marginally better
Just get everyone to 50MPG, and we can then contemplate the next step.
By the way, I just saw that Volkswagen has headed down the diesel-electric-hybrid path. Have a look at
"High energy catalyst" is a bit of a misnomer, but I do of course understand what you mean.
By definition, a catalyst is a substance that is involved in (and has some beneficial impact on) a chemical process, but does NOT get consumed (transformed) by the process.
no more big cars
Yep. It is all about curtailing the freedom of others.
No Peter, actually, the big car owners have spent 1950-1975 and 1995-2008 curtailing MY freedom by driving (literally) up the cost of energy through their wasteful ways. 1/2 :-)
On another note. Mountain View inventory is at 150 again, was 165 a week ago. "They" must be managing the MLS and pruning the stale listings pretty hard lately. Any insights? It is Tuesday today and it will jump again tomorrow, but seems a little low still.
Wednesday is the day of the week when most new listings get made. I could make a joke here about how the work-week of a typical realtwhore looks....
They did not curtail your freedom. You curtailed your own freedom by not making enough money.
Yeah, Peter? As you probably know, it is a law of mathematics that not everyone can make more money than the average. What about those below the average? There has to be some.
And what about the future generations that got their freedom curtailed by high energy prices? What should they do, apply for a richer daddy?
As you probably know, it is a law of mathematics that not everyone can make more money than the average. What about those below the average? There has to be some.
In Nature, there are always predators and preys, winners and losers. It is only natural to adopt the same philosophy.
Besides, you seem to be incapable of comprehending the concept of abundance.
RE: laws of thermodynamics
Physics is our observation of the universe. It is actually more subjective than many would like to think it is.
Do not fall into the trap of Scientism.
I am going to buy a car that runs on aborted baby fetuses. They are an abundant source of alternative energy, and as long as acquired in a free market environment, there is nothing wrong with it. Let's not let those little losers who couldn't even pick the right parents go to waste!
>>I stated that the problems of using basic electrolysis for water powered vehicles is well known.
The point being that the vehicle is not being powered by water, but by something else.
Much in the same way as steam engines are not powered by steam or water, per se, but rather by the substance used to heat the water into steam. Should have thought about that analogy already :-).
I'd say that would be a lawn mower that has a reservoir of peanuts, the peanuts being the agent containing the energy that is consumed by the lawn mower engine, no other energy to be added (except for you pulling the starter cord).
Of course, for the big picture one still has to consider where the peanuts come from and what energy was used to produce them, apart from sunshine.
The big picture is of particular interest in the case where you replace peanuts in the above scenario with hydrogen, and replace peanut farming with (say) building and operating a nuclear power plant whose energy is used (one way or the other) to split H2O into H2 and O2.
Well, yeah, sort of, except re-read my post about the scientific definition of a catalyst. The catalyst is not allowed to be consumed or altered to a lower energy form....that would be cheating. Kind of like calling coal the "catalyst" of a steam plant that makes electricity. Not really correct, in fact quite wrong.
Good point about the possible negative consequences of abundant energy. I think we already have seen plenty of negative consequences (socially, sprawl) be people *thinking* that energy is abundant.
Sure, platinum is very commonly used as a catalyst. One property of platinum is that it is good for adsorbing (note: adsorb, not aBsorb) other elements on its surface, e.g. O and H). I remember this from freshman chemistry, but a real chemist can tell you lots more about this.
A catalyst can help electrolysis become more efficient (less loss in the process), but it does not remove the fundamental principle that you still have to put in more electric (or whatever) power than you get out in H2 chemical energy produced.
So, yeah, I think Genepax is complete bunk. Especially the part about claiming that the "car runs on water". Like I said, so do a steam engines and old trains, but it misses the point rather completely.
TOB and others, I found this to be a good primer on the The Chemistry of Water. They have a good section on producing Hydrogen from water.
It's Thursday, and Mountain View inventory is back up at 167. I guess we're on track after all.
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