Vancouver real estate agent Ian Watt.
Vancouver real estate agent Ian Watt.
Is it possible that the radon levels in granite counters is so high as to make them dangerous? That’s what is suggested in a recent article in the New York Times, noting that some types of granite hold harmful levels of uranium and should be removed.
Here in the Pacific Northwest, we’ve been told we have a hard level of bedrock that makes exposure to radon unlikely. However, with the threat of radon exposure coming from inside the house instead of outside and underneath, I guess I’l be suggesting that home buyers get a radon test.
I think in a few years, we’ll be looking at granite counters as the equivalent of pink and tourquise tiles or harvest gold and avocado green appliances. They will be horribly dated and will be ripped out wholesale by homeowners. If one has a vintage home, a material of the period would be more inline with the home style. If one has a modern home, there are plenty of other materials that would be more suitable, less dangerous and don’t involve strip-mining to use.
The Microsoft Innoventions Dream Home opened up last month at Disneyland to great fanfare. Reminiscent of the old Monsanto “House of the Future” in Tomorrowland, this new modern home is located inside the Carousel of Progress building, where guests used to watch vignettes of American history revolve past them.
It is designed not as something futuristic for the â€œJetsonsâ€ but for the fictional Elias family (Walt Disney’s middle name), with early 20th-century art nouveau and art deco flourishes.
In the kitchen beneath a yellow glass countertop is a flat-screen monitor on which appears menus and recipes that a voice-activated instructor named Lillian (Disney’s wife’s name) can recite the recipes. That feature would make paper cookbooks superfluous and pages spill-free.
In the “daughters room”, a full-length â€œMagic Mirror 2.01â€ incorporates a touch screen that allows you to select outfits and accessories, which are projected onto your image so you can see if they’re right for the occasion. As you turn from side to side, the outfit moves with you.
Other devices in the house are equally intriguing. The dining room table incorporates â€œMicrosoft Surfaceâ€ touch screens that allow you to move puzzle pieces into one large image. You can also make virtual ripples appear in a virtual pond. A coffee table, connected wirelessly to the Internet, displays an early edition of â€œAlice in Wonderlandâ€ from the British Library.
The house was built by Taylor Morrison of Arizona, and it was designed to act as a â€œplatformâ€ for hardware and software products from Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard and Life/Ware, a company whose computer programs operate interactive and wireless controls for lights, heating, communications and entertainment.
A representative said a 3,000-square-foot home could be retrofitted with basic hardware and systems for about $2,500, or $50,000 with the latest and greatest â€“ from the 100-inch flat-screen TV in the family room to the HP Panoply Gaming Chair, which jiggles and rocks as you play like you’re competing in a high-speed car race. The company representatives on hand said their goal was to display products available now or in the next two years and to constantly update the items over the five-year period of the Dream Home’s present configuration.
A home builder from the Land of Foreclosure visited the Magic Kingdom recently to participate in a unique project that offers visitors from around the world a glimpse into the future.
Scottsdale-based Steve Wethor, president of developer Taylor Morrison’s Western region, led a team that helped design the Innoventions Dream Home, which opened to the public this week inside the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim.