Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Live house

  (+5, -2)
(+5, -2)
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This idea is for a house, built mostly of metal and isolated from the ground by insulators. The mains electricity coming into the house has the 'live' cable connected directly to the metalwork of the house as well as the 'earth' cable of all the electrical appliances. The 'earth' cable from the mains then effectively becomes the 'live' for the house. When inside the house, you and everything you touch will be at the same potential so you won't get electrocuted. You can enter the house without fear of electrocution if you jump cleanly from the ground into the house - if you step, so that you've got, for example, one foot in a small puddle outside your house, and the other on the live, shiny metal floor of your porch, you'll die a painful and dramatic death.
hippo, Jan 12 2007

Mona Hatoum http://www.universe.../e-hatoum-zoom1.htm
detail for Mona Hatoum's most excellent Electrified series [xenzag, Jan 12 2007]

[link]






       I'm sure there's a reason this wouldn't work, but I'm damned if I can think of it. AC motors with start-up capacitors might be a problem.
angel, Jan 12 2007
  

       Take a look at Mona Hatoum's Electrified series, where she connected domestic objects in series to the mains electric.... sort of the opposite of hippo's idea, in as much as you are ok as long as you don't touch anything. +
xenzag, Jan 12 2007
  

       You could avoid death on leaving the house with glass doormat.
ooooooooo, Jan 12 2007
  

       Probably not good for electronics. If the house is at a high potential then it will behave as if statically charged. Anything brought into the house that is charge-neutral will get a static shock as it equalises with the high potential house.   

       Whether it has serious (or any) consequences would depend on how highly charged the house is, and just how sensitive electronics are to static shocks these days.   

       "Remember, kids. Never shake hands with any door to door salesmen"   

       Presumably post must be thown into rather than pushed through the letter box.   

       ...and the house would either be very vulnerable or invulneralble to lightning strikes (depending on the polarity and how all that works).
st3f, Jan 12 2007
  

       "We literally got the shock of our lives when the electricity bill came through the letterbox."
Ian Tindale, Jan 12 2007
  

       The water system would have to be ingeniously designed.
zen_tom, Jan 12 2007
  

       think of the money you'd save on not having to bother with a burglar alarm.
neilp, Jan 14 2007
  

       Just ... why??
BunsenHoneydew, Jan 14 2007
  

       I think I'll post a string of related idea: Mini-Trampoline Doormats, Front Hall Landing Pads, Personal Static Discharge Straps, Live House Postal Delivery Gloves, "Ring Doorbell At Your Peril" Signs...
Canuck, Jan 14 2007
  

       "So, why is your canary called 'Faraday', again?"
Ian Tindale, Jan 14 2007
  

       I don't know what [st3f] is talking about, I can't see any components suffering too much, as normal mains power (110 or 240V epending on where you are) is a pitifully low potential when you're talking about static. A normal static charge such that you might experience a "zap" would be in the many thousands of volts range.   

       Only probelms I see would be insulation breakdown, the need to devise new RCD type protection relays, and earth return via services such as sewerage and water. Biggest problem for me would be the complete inability to run more than one phase of power through your house, or if you did, balancing phases would be nigh on impossible. I can't see how you could ratinalise more than one phase of power in your house. Maybe it's just me who wants the 3-phase, n+e plug in his shed?
Custardguts, Jan 14 2007
  
      
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