San Francisco--Steve Wozniak will put up a modular home as soon as he can find an ideal piece of real estate.
Wozniak, a former Apple employee, is a fan of homes from Enertia, which sells kits for energy efficient homes. The kits range in price from less than $100,000 to more than $300,000, depending on the size of the home and the design. Wozniak right now is looking for a piece of real estate in the Bay Area that will be suitable, he said during a hallway conversation at West Coast Green, a green-building conference taking place in San Francisco this week. (Wozniak also spoke at the event.)
What makes the homes green? The houses are made with solid wood walls and the wood has a high resin content. Yellow pine works well. When it's cold out, the resin freezes and traps heat inside. When it's hot, heat is allowed to naturally radiate outside. Thus, the house itself helps control temperature. Like other green homes, the Enertia homes also exploit natural lighting and cooling (taking advantage of cross breezes) as much as possible.
The wood slats are also grooved, so you don't need nails to put one together, he said. The basic home design grew out of work at Brigham Young University.
Wozniak learned about the home while participating as a judge for a contest on the History Channel. Enertia won first prize.
The green industry is growing but companies have to remain focused on the basics, he said during his formal presentation.
"Pricing has to be kind of right for humans," he said.
He further added that a 2004 Prius and a Segway have changed his life. He came into the conference on a Segway, in fact. What's so green about a Segway? I mean, can't you just walk down the hall.
The Segway gets used for short-term commutes. He leaves his home and rides it about a mile or so to the city center where he works. That's a shot of him on his chariot looking like Ramses III.