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Heating your floor

Heat rises. Heating floors is not a new idea, but is one to be considered in designing or remodeling.
Green by Design has a good article on heating your floor.
Barefoot Dreams in the Dead of Winter

Solar Strategy

I live in Phoenix and get a lot more sunshine than most folks. The idea of sunlight paying for my AC and other electric needs is a powerful one.

I ran across this article this morning, An old engine learns new solar tricks about a company using the Stirling engine for generating power.

Infinia has details on their page here
This is not new as there are a number of companies that are using this technology, but these folks are getting up to 24% conversion and the costs of the units are coming down. Especially in relationship to flat panel and roof mounted units.

Currently they are 15,000.00 bucks. When they get down to around 1500-3000 bucks, it is the sort of thing that will sell a bunch, and drop your electric bill.