Our lives may be full of far too much technology. Everyday we read about something new and fascinating that will radically change our lives. Self-driving cars that alleviate the need for traffic lights, smart houses, pre-prepared fruit, etc. etc. It’s all suppose to make our lives easier – but the only thing it really does is clutter our lives with stuff, most of which is of the disposable type. Sure, I have a workshop full of handtools, but those tools will likely still be around in 200+ years (if properly cared for). The Apple MacBook I’m writing this on probably has a life-span of 4-5 years… and that’s only because of the solid-state memory. When electricity goes out in an ice-storm, an axe or wood-saw might be useful, both from the point of view of getting fuel, or chopping down trees – yet how many modern houses have either of these?
People talk a lot about smart houses, but are they necessary to make things more efficient? How about building more passive houses – houses that are ultra-low energy and require very little energy for heating or cooling the space inside the house. It may be time to build better houses (or even smaller ones?) before we throw technology at the problem.