Product Review: Inhabitat tests out the Honeywell Lyric WiFi Thermostat

August 31, 2016 by  
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Honeywell’s Lyric Wifi Thermostat is a smartphone-connected device that allows you to regulate the temperature of your home while you’re there or on-the-go. Because you can control it via the Lyric app , it gives you the flexibility to start cooling your place down as you leave the office on a hot day, or to shut the system down from 30,000 feet in the air if you forget to switch it off before leaving to catch your plane. Like other programmable thermostats, it can be set up on a schedule so that it maintains a comfortable temperature during the times you’re usually at home while switching the system off during times you’re not. There’s also a handy geofencing feature that allows you to map off a radius around your home so that the system can detect that you’re nearby using your phone’s GPS system and start heating or cooling your home to your preferred temperature. A thermostat that knows when you’re almost home? That’s pretty cool! RELATED: VIDEO: How to save money and energy with a programmable thermostat Design-wise, the Honeywell Lyric WiFi Thermostat is one of the most visually pleasing models on the market, although you have to admit that its round form factor does look pretty similar to the Nest’s (a competitor that rings in at about $50 more at $249). On the other hand, it should be noted that Honeywell came up with the first round thermostat way back in 1953, so maybe they’re just getting back to their roots. With a pristine white face wrapped in a sliver of silver, the unit is almost like an artpiece or accessory for your wall. The minimal touchscreen buttons light up in a cool blue, giving it an even more soothing appearance. In the box: The unit itself, a battery, two screws and anchors for mounting, instructions and an optional wall plate. Setting the device up was a breeze, although I should note that since I live in an apartment with no existing in-unit thermostat system, I was unable to actually install the thermostat as you would if you were actually going to use it to control your heater and air conditioner. Instead, I simulated the installation process using a wall adapter, so this part of my review is based solely on the ease of setup, rather than how the device actually regulated the temperature in my home. The first steps are downloading the Lyric app and connecting to your WiFi, and after that, your phone guides you through the entire setup and installation process. Although I wasn’t fiddling with any wiring or anything like that, I was still able to appreciate the step-by-step instructions that popped up right on my phone to guide me through the installation process if I was. It even asks you questions along the way so that you can tailor the experience to your particular system, taking the hassle out of fumbling with an instruction manual and leafing through the parts that may or may not apply to you. The whole thing took me about 5 minutes to complete (though you would probably need to spend at least 20 if you were actually following the steps). One thing I did find was that the touchscreen buttons were not quite as responsive as I wanted them to be and I had to press down harder than I’m used to doing on my smartphone. Luckily, there’s not much need to use the buttons on the unit itself after setup since you can just use your phone to make any changes, or simply rotate the face of the unit clockwise or counterclockwise to turn your temps up or down. The Lyric app itself is intuitive, easy-to-use and starts up in a matter of moments. The Lyric WiFi Thermostat is also fully compatible with Apple HomeKit, Samsung SmartThings, Amazon Echo and other home ecosystems. In terms of energy and cost savings, Honeywell’s energy savings calculator estimates that I stand to save about $142 per year on my energy bill (based on my zip code) using the Lyric WiFi Thermostat. That means that in addition to keeping my home comfortable and reducing my power usage, I could also make back the $199 spent on the Lyric Thermostat in a little over a year. To learn more about how the Lyric Wifi Thermostat can help you slash your energy bills, check out the video above or visit Honeywell’s Lyric Connected Home website here . + Honeywell Lyric WiFi Thermostat Editor’s note: The Honeywell Lyric WiFi Thermostat was supplied to this writer free-of-charge by Honeywell in exchange for an unbiased review. Photos: Honeywell and Yuka Yoneda

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Product Review: Inhabitat tests out the Honeywell Lyric WiFi Thermostat

INTERVIEW: Queen of tiny living Felice Cohen on her new guidebook for small spaces

August 30, 2016 by  
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Our story on New Yorker Felice Cohen’s incredibly micro 90-square-foot apartment went viral when we first published it back in 2012, and now the author, organizer and speaker is sharing her tiny living experiences in a new book entitled 90 Lessons for Living Large in 90 Square Feet (…or more) . Felice was kind enough to share some of her tiny living tips with us recently on our NYC site — click through to see what she has to say about making the most of a minuscule abode.

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INTERVIEW: Queen of tiny living Felice Cohen on her new guidebook for small spaces

Photographer upcycles street trash into brilliant home decor

August 11, 2016 by  
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Kaplan always had an eye for upcycling, even before it was a trend. He told Inhabitat, “I travel a lot around the world, and since I was a child I was creative about making things from other things,” he said, “I would walk down the street and find things and think, ‘What can I do with this?’ It could be an abandoned tree limb, a box or even a book.” When Kaplan finally had his own apartment, he realized that all his dreams for creative upcycling could come into fruition. Instead of dropping big bucks at IKEA , he gradually furnished his entire home with found treasures. He fashioned a coffee table from abandoned wood scraps and a piece of glass, replete with draw storage and rope pulls. Wall shelving was achieved with antique army boxes and piles of old books. An abandoned window frame that Kaplan discovered in the garbage was reborn as a spectacular photograph display of a carousel in Dumbo, Brooklyn. And a retired florescent ceiling panel was transformed into artful wall lighting, Kaplan glossing over the lamp with a transparent photographic overlay. RELATED: 10 inspiring upcycled designs that will make you think twice before tossing anything The pièce de ré·sis·tance, however, is Kaplan’s lush green wall . Made from scrap wood, chicken wire, old olive oil cans and a variety of plant species, his rustic statement piece invites magnificent green life indoors. Kaplan went to great lengths to improve his dwelling with minimal use of new objects and materials. He even renovated his own bathroom with vintage tiles and a handmade lamp crafted from wire. The kitchen seating nook was constructed from wood and adorned with kitschy antique signs. This kind of artful repurposing has the power to inspire anyone. The next time you’re strolling down a city street, you may want to keep your eyes open – a treasure trove of endless possibilities awaits. + Or Kaplan + Vibe Israel Images © Or Kaplan

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Photographer upcycles street trash into brilliant home decor

Revamped NYC rooftop is brought to life with tinted resin panels

July 1, 2016 by  
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Evan C. Lai Landscape Design (ECLLD) designed this green rooftop above a gritty East Village townhouse in Manhattan. The 400sf space was maximized with an extensive green roof, neutral stone, and tinted resin panels. In the lounge the green resin transforms a skylight into a glow-in-the-dark daybed; in the foyer it casts a semi-translucent shade over an exterior shower and sauna; by the bar it adds a concentrated brushstroke across walls and benches. The design is topped off with a green roof above the sauna that improves insulation and water runoff. + Evan C. Lai Landscape Design The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing!

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Revamped NYC rooftop is brought to life with tinted resin panels

Graypants debuts new brighter and lighter Scraplights White recycled cardboard lamp series

June 8, 2016 by  
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The new addition to the Scraplight series  comes thanks to seven years of brainstorming. The original Scraplights are made from the company’s signature brown corrugated paper, and are known for giving off a rustic warmth that creates a cozy atmosphere indoors. But with the success of their first line, Graypants sought to design a version that would accommodate interiors needing bright, continuous light, such as office spaces or schools. Related: Graypants’ Garage Receives Glowing Accolades as 2013 AIA Award Winner for Washington Architecture The Scraplight White series was designed to be more open and translucent, and to give off a bright, modern glow. The lamps are handmade in Holland through a partnership with a social works program that provides craft-based jobs to locals, engaging the community around Graypants’ Amsterdam headquarters. Each paper piece that makes up the lights is also made from FSC-Certified paper , sourced from forests that continually replant more trees than harvested. Both the Scraplight White and original series are completely recyclable regardless of shape, and the fixtures and parts can be swapped out if they are ever damaged. Graypants’ Scraplight White is a sustainable alternative to their original series, perfect for event spaces, offices, or even at home. + Graypants Studio

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Graypants debuts new brighter and lighter Scraplights White recycled cardboard lamp series

TGH Architects Gives California’s Hupomone Ranch a LEED Platinum Upgrade

May 26, 2016 by  
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With a nod toward a traditional barn house , Hupomone Ranch is clad with a peaked two story glass façade, which floods the interior with light while showcasing the rolling hills of the family’s property. On the ground floor, an open plan living room overlooks the region’s natural beauty and the double height ceiling creates an airy atmosphere. A cozy eat-in kitchen is tucked on one side of the living room, with bedrooms on the other. The home’s main entrance is located on the far side of the living room and a glass curtain that extends just to the first floor creates a channel of light from the front to the back of the home. Related: Glass Farm: MVRDV’s Modern Glass Building is Printed With a Traditional Farmhouse Facade Lining the mezzanine are two more bedrooms, which overlook the living room below, including a cozy reading area nestled under the home’s gabled peak. The home faces a great lawn that lies adjacent to the family swimming pool and pool house. Both structures on the beautiful farmhouse complex are energy efficient and utilize passive heating and cooling technologies, as well as solar energy. The stunning design received a Merit Award from AIA San Francisco Design Awards 2016 . + Turnbill Griffin Haesloop Architects Via Freshome

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TGH Architects Gives California’s Hupomone Ranch a LEED Platinum Upgrade

NOAA’s LEED Gold marine research facility embodies San Diego’s coast

May 26, 2016 by  
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Inspired by the topography of La Jolla Cove, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ‘s sustainable marine research facility appears to emerge from the contours of the coast, reshaping the relationship between marine scientists and their environment. An outgrowth of the effort to relocate an existing facility that was facing the uncertain effects of coastal erosion, the new building extends beyond supporting conservation efforts, to embodying them. http://vimeo.com/20745026 The LEED Gold certified project is a five-story building, broken down into smaller structures, which are clustered in “villages” no more than two stories in height. These smaller elements are organized around atrium courtyards, which prevent the overwhelming feeling common to many large buildings. The courts and patios take full advantage of the mild climate, promote natural ventilation and foster a sense of scientific community and connectedness to the environment. The building boasts photovoltaic cells, a water retention system, recycled materials, and several green roofs planted with native vegetation. The facility is home to 38 research laboratories, an aquarium, library, conference rooms, and office space, for its 275 scientists and support staff. + NOAA La Jolla Laboratory Replacement Project The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing!

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NOAA’s LEED Gold marine research facility embodies San Diego’s coast

Shape-shifting Exocet Chair conforms to the body in dozens of ways

May 19, 2016 by  
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Handcrafted from birch wood, the transforming lounger is available in several veneers including White Oak, Cherry, Walnut, Maple and Mozambique. Spinning the Exocet ‘s rotating steel axis instantly adjusts the seat depending on your personal activity or comfort level. Whether lounging, reading, napping, or entertaining, this patent-pending design is fashioned for a myriad of situations. RELATED: 11 pieces of transforming furniture that work wonders for small spaces When asked how the design came to be, Exocet’s designer Stéphane Leathead told Inhabitat: “I was looking for a way to design a chair that would allow you to adjust it for your own comfort, based on our own specific different proportions. I couldn’t find anything on the market, and I said there must be a way to design a chair that would allow this…so I said there’s no choice but to have a rotating axis to allow you to angle to the proper [position]…Egonomically nature is good for that, that kind of drop shape guided me. It’s very organic, it looks nicer, and it’s more pleasant. There’s not one straight line on our body — how come we design straight line chairs?”   Leathead explains that the elegant, ergonomic Exocet Chair lets everyone become a designer. He says, “You design the chair you like — you become the designer.” While this version is better for indoor use (because the wood would warp in rain), Leathead is also looking into an outdoor version, as well as custom cushions to enhance the comfort level. The limited edition design was recently on display at NYCxDesign  and has received multiple awards, including the 2015 Gold A’Design Award in Milan, the 2015 Coup de Coeur Sidim Award in Montreal, and the 2015 K-Design Award in Seoul. + Exocet Chair

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Shape-shifting Exocet Chair conforms to the body in dozens of ways

VanMoof unveils new Electrified S super-connected electric smart-bike with 500% power boost

April 5, 2016 by  
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3d-printer turns used plastic bottles into beautiful vases

April 4, 2016 by  
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The makers at DesignLibero have developed a brilliant new way to upcycle plastic bottles into beautiful home decor. Using 3D-printing technology, the designers have fashioned this intricate shell customized to fit perfectly over a 0.5 or 1 liter PET water or soft drink bottle. The shell can be screwed easily onto a bottle just like a cap, making any bottle magically disappear under its mesh. The vases are now available in several styles on Make it LEO and Tessa’s Curated Boutique . + DesignLibero Images via Claudio Morelli The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing!

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3d-printer turns used plastic bottles into beautiful vases

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