Tiny House, Tiny Living, The Tiny Life.

Solar Rundown

So I have yet to really dabble in solar energy, but it is something that I do want to implement in my tiny home.  So today I am simply posting great resources for solar power.  One of the greatest untapped energy resources that exists is the sun, of course the hurtle that exists is how to take this energy and capture it efficiently and cost effectively.  I have a good feeling that the next 5 years will bring huge innovations in solar energy with Obama’s plan for cleaner energy.

First off here is some basic info about solar panels

Here is a cheap panel that can charge 90% of all your gadgets, phones etc.

The day in the life of a solar panel installer here

Mainstream of solar through Home Depot

Weekend projects you can do here

Solar Tent Structure

For those of you who haven’t caught on, I am a very big fan of ultra modern architecture.  I love the minimalist approach when it comes to many things, houses included.  One trend I have noticed over the years is designers fascination with “tent houses.”  While these are tents, they are designed to be permanent or semi-permanent, often focus on bringing the outdoors in and are designed with a modern flair to them.

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Today we are looking at the Orange Solar Tent designed by ‘Orange’.  This design has a very unique feature as the entire canopy structure has several layers of cloth so that it can generate electricity and provide a vapor barrier.   The entire shell of this is a woven solar array, which admitedly is a few years out, but is coming soon, just not soon enough.

The idea is to later integrate wifi into the cloth as well as pockets inside the structure for magnetic induction charging of small electronics like cell phones.

Check out more over at Treehugger

Tiny House Tiny Garden: Maximizing space through design

As I make my way to a Tiny Life, I have recently started a garden to grow my own vegetables. To be honest I rather suck at it but Things are growing and I have been able to make about a metric ton of pesto so far. Today I found these really neat ideas for how to maximize space and grow food also.

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More at Treehugger

Bigger Is Not Necessarily Better

Bigger is not necessarily better.  Bigger can certainly be beautiful!  And there is nothing inherently wrong in bigger.  But bigger can be quite costly in both the short and long term and can bring with it many headaches.

It’s important to be compassionate: many of us could not but help buy into the belief that as we grew up that we, too, could purchase the type of homes our parents did– homes just as “spacious” and stately– even if we were raised in a row home or semi-detached dwelling.BigSmall

But for chiefly economic reasons– many of which readers of “The Tiny Life” are aware– the purchase (and sustaining) of long-term mortgages has become less likely, less possible, and fraught with more risk.

For the sake of example, let’s suppose you and I can purchase such a home.  My father worked for a corporation and was employed 33 consecutive years with that same employer before he retired.  In general, such job security today, let alone with a single employer, is not the norm nor the reality for the vast majority of us.

Therefore, taking on a 20-35 year mortgage brings with it the worries of what will happen if one or both incomes become imperiled.  What happens to our long-term investment if 23 years into our 25-year mortgage we lose either our jobs or our health?  What if savings and the help of family &/or friends is not enough to “save” our home?

Read more

What do you get when you combined a bagel factory & dirt?

If you spend any time in NYC, LA or other large cities you notcie what James Kunstler calls “nature bandaids”  click here for my post and his video img_2852_2 But what about when you combined a bagel factory & dirt?  In NYC an old bagel factory had its roof top converted from 6000 square feet of sheet metal to a viable farm!

Ben Flanner launched this project after feeling that he had his fill of working for E-Trade and when he saw how many folks around were turning to growing their own food, he jumped at the chance.  He partnered with several folk from botanists, gardeners, farmers and a green roof architect firm to make his dream a reality.

The farm is already being harvested and being sold to local restaurants as the closest to source vegetables available. Ultimately he hopes to set up a stand where he can sell to people of the community to keep it all as local as possible.

See more about it over at Good

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