Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Perfect Wall

The perfect wall would have to be incorporated into the “perfect building” since we have agreed that buildings should be looked at as a system. The best step we can take is to back up to say, “In climates where … Continue reading

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Buildings as Machines or Systems

We seem to be a long way from the self-repairing building that would be the analog of the human body. Many have written about the building skin as analogous to the body skin, but remember: wound the building skin, and … Continue reading

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Claddings Leak! Water flows downhill!

All cladding leaks! I remember Joe Lstiburek’s “Flash for Cash” presentation well. Even all glass boxes leak at the seams! If 99% of caulk holds, you have 1% holes. Claude Shannon, the father of information theory applied redundancy to transmitting … Continue reading

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Why does good mold go bad?

We humans have enjoyed a long and fruitful symbiotic relationship with mold organisms. They have made us sick, made us well, preserved and enhanced our foods and diets. In short: Where would we be without them? Toting around sour milk, … Continue reading

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Caution Falling Building (parts)

Some of us remember the John Hancock Fiasco when I.M.Pei designed one beautiful all glass building in Boston, and before it was finished the windows started popping out. Theories of failure were abundant, and it turns out the problem was … Continue reading

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Commonsense Direction

So, back in the day, when we started walking upright and living in caves, it was de rigeur not to generate waste on the same end of the cave as the water supply. Similarly, when villages grew, the privy, bathing, … Continue reading

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Common sense combined heat and power.

So why do we build enormous fossil fuel gulping/burning power plants to distribute electricity to run electric domestic water heaters? And the domestic water heaters are providing water at about the temperature the power plants condensers are sending plumes of … Continue reading

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Commonsense Common Sense

Why is common sense uncommon? There is a brain chemical, anandamide, (N-arachidonoylethanolamide!)┬áthat helps us clear the clutter in our brains. It is sometimes called the bliss molecule, because it is the chemical eraser that allows us to tolerate situations by … Continue reading

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Common Misteaks

Okay, I know they are mistakes! But in the age of most importantly and secondly, how long will it be before that looks right? Remember, there are plenty of new mistakes to make, let’s not keep repeating the old ones. … Continue reading

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Commonsense Siting

Just square the house off with the street. How many times have we heard that? Too many. This was the way we built it in Florida, will it work in Maine? No. I’ll just order some plans, they look so … Continue reading

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