Talk:Xanadu Houses

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Former featured article Xanadu Houses is a former featured article. Please see the links under Article milestones below for its original nomination page (for older articles, check the nomination archive) and why it was removed.
Main Page trophy This article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on January 3, 2006.


The second paragraph of the "History" section introduces "Roy Mason" rather intensly. It seems like the phrase "Architect Roy Mason" means to imply that an architect named Roy Mason was chosen as the lead architect on the project? I don't know much about architecture, so I didn't want to change the article myself, but I'd suggest something like "Architect Roy Mason was chosen as the [lead architect / some other architecture term] for the Xanadu House. He had previously worked on a similar project involving polyurethane foam, an "experimental school" in Virginia." -- Creidieki 05:47, 30 November 2005 (UTC)

In the section marked Design, the first sentence says: "The creator of the Xanadu house is a mass murder and hides his killings in the backyard of retirement homes." I don't believe this could be a valid statement.

"earliest home automation systems"?[edit]

I rewrote the introduction to make it a little clearer what the Xanadu Houses were. I added that they contained "some of the earliest home automation systems". That *seems* to be true, but I'm not completely sure that it is, so if it's inaccurate it should probably be fixed. -- Creidieki 05:58, 30 November 2005 (UTC)

History section order[edit]

The "History" section was a bit out-of-order, talking about the second Xanadu House before the first. I understand that the second house was the most important one, but I think that it's better to go in chronological order with this. I rearranged the section somewhat; you may need to check to make sure that the footnotes are still okay. This rearrangement brings out that the first House isn't covered very clearly in the article; another sentence or two would help that paragraph a lot (perhaps why it wasn't as popular, or the distinctive features of that design, or somesuch). But I don't see expanding that part as strictly necessary, it's just a suggestion. -- Creidieki 17:25, 30 November 2005 (UTC)

The rearrangement is good. The problem is that there is actually no information other than what is there about the Wisconsin Dells and Tennessee homes. The Xanadu book (which I have and, obviously, used to write most of this article) doesn't even say much about them. The Xanadu that became the most popular, and lasted the longest (from 1983-2005, while the others lasted from about 1979-early 1990s) was the Kissimmee house that used computers and automation conceived by Roy Mason. I guess the others houses were not as popular because they didn't use the technology and automated systems that the Kissimmee house became known for. — Wackymacs 18:24, 30 November 2005 (UTC)
  • I hadn't realized that the other houses weren't focusing on automation, maybe that should be clearer somewhere. You might be able to just say something like that: "The first Xanadu house included novel architectural design, but did not include the automation and technology of the later Kissimmee house, and never rivalled that house in popularity." That would help to place the first house in context, and incidentally fills out the paragraph nicely. In the part about the third house, add something like "A third Xanadu house was built in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, but was constructed by a different architect, and did not include the computerization of the second house. Like the first house, it was largely overshadowed by the automation-focused Kissimmee house." -- Creidieki 20:24, 30 November 2005 (UTC)

Context in Lead[edit]

It goes from saying how popular they were, to the houses being demolished. The question is why were they demolished. Obviously interest waned, but why did it wane, and/or was politics involved and/or the land being needed for something else. - RoyBoy 800 15:58, 13 December 2005 (UTC)

  • The information you request is covered towards the end of the History section of the article. The lead of an article is not meant to mention the topic in detail but summarize the article, thanks. — Wackymacs 17:58, 13 December 2005 (UTC)

Tense of Design Paragraph[edit]

I fixed the tense in the second paragraph of Design - it switched from past to present to past while talking about the same thing. - --Aarondude919 03:01, 3 January 2006 (UTC)


A very nice article, but with room for more information. There is no wiki-link for Bob Masters, for example, who seems to be sort of a mysterious person, judging from Google. Also the article seems a little "Florida-Centric," to this childhood fan of the (original!) WI one. It would be nice to nail-down an actual closing date for the WI and TN Xanadus, for example. And I especially notice that under the "Design" section the article repeatedly mentions "Xanadu House" and "Xanadu" when it seems to be refering only to the *Florida* Xanadu (I don't think the WI Xanadu was on a lake, for example). As a final note, pics of the WI and TN Xanadu would be particularly welcome, as these seem to unavailable on the web. ThaddeusFrye 17:21, 3 January 2006 (UTC)


I'm kind of new to this, but don't we need a disambiguation page? Can't Xanadu refer to other things?

Yep, but Xanadu doesnt redirect to here. You'd have to deliberately type "Xanadu House" to get to this page. Hence Xanadu points to Xanadu (disambiguation), and this page doesnt. GeeJo (t) (c) 16:01, 3 January 2006 (UTC)

Xanadu House is also the name of an undergraduate student residence at Stanford University, where First Daughter Chelsea Clinton lived in 1998-9.Kenta2 19:58, 4 January 2006 (UTC)

Differences between the versions is not very clear[edit]

The article should try to put the differences in perspective.The article now seems to tell people that all the houses were identical.-- 19:45, 3 January 2006 (UTC)

  • If you know anything about the other Xanadu houses apart from the Florida one then please do add any information you know, or pictures. I have found pictures of the others but no actual information. I own the official Xanadu book and it only very briefly talks about the other houses, sorry. The first was designed by Bob Masters, and included a glass dome for a greenhouse, I believe. — Wackymacs 21:52, 3 January 2006 (UTC)

Design section[edit]

Does anybody know what "derior" means, as in the sentence "It used curved walls, painted concrete floors rather than carpets, a light color scheme featuring cool colors throughout, and an open-floor plan linking rooms together without the use of derior used a cream color for the walls, and a pale green for the floor."? I'm also puzzled by this sentence: "A pre-shaped vi sound shell within a few hours." VirtualDave 01:56, 29 January 2006 (UTC)

I'm confused by this: "A pre-shaped vinyl balloon was formed and attached to the ring, and then inflated by air pressure from large fans. Once the form was fully inflated, its interior surface was sprayed with quick-hardening polyurethane plastic foam. Spraying from the inside permitted work to continue even in wet or windy weather." You mean the inside of the balloon was sprayed? I don't see how it could be deflated after that. Or by "interior" do you just mean what later becomes the interior of the house? 02:38, 2 September 2006 (UTC)


From "Design", "A pre-shaped vi sound shell within a few hours.". Can anyone understand that? Thanx 00:11, 31 March 2006 (UTC)


Are we sure they used Commodore computers? The Quicktime video in the Links section, as well as the picture of the kids using the computer in the bedroom, appear to show IBM PCs. 02:40, 2 September 2006 (UTC)

I believe there is one more Xanadu Style...[edit]

I know of a Xanadu styled house in Gainesville, Fl. I deliver pizza and took a delivery there not too long ago. I can go back and see if the owner will let me take some pictures. I do not know if the designer just copied the Xanadu style or the process used in constructing the house. I will ask. 08:17, 22 February 2007 (UTC)snappz 22Feb2007 0816hrs

Reliance on primary sources[edit]

The article relies too much on the book, and articles by Roy Mason, the architect and promoter of Xanadu Houses, or on articles that are based on his promotions so that the concepts temporarily "caught on". Not enough reliable, independent sources that talk about the real Xanadu Houses and the concepts behind them. Some of the references in the article are questionable. Regards, —mattisse (Talk) 21:21, 25 August 2009 (UTC)


Are these even notable? I've had a very, very hard time turning up more than a couple of secondary sources outside unreliable stuff like Roadside America. Almost every news and book hit is a false positive. Ten Pound Hammer, his otters and a clue-bat • (Many ottersOne batOne hammer) 01:41, 6 November 2009 (UTC)

There are multiple sources listed in References and Further reading that justify notability. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 01:47, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
You mean the ones tagged with {{unreliable source}} or the ones that are from a book by the architect? Or the very small number that are actually decent and may or may not be trivial? I'll grant that #7 is good, but #14 gives barely even a paragraph. Ten Pound Hammer, his otters and a clue-bat • (Many ottersOne batOne hammer) 01:51, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
TPH, have you actually read wiki's notability page? SandyGeorgia (Talk) 03:00, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
Let's break it down. 4, 7, 9, 13 are the only five secondary sources out of the 18 sourced. 4 and 9 aren't available online, so I'll give them benefit of the doubt. 7 is a four-page magazine article whose primary focus is the house. 13 gives less than a paragraph. There are two books cited in the "further reading" section, but they only give one page mention at the most, so who knows how non-trivial they are? I'm not flat out saying "this is not notable at all;" I just think that the notability is on the borderline. As you can see above, the quality of the sources has been questioned before. Most of it merely seems to be "short burst[s] of news reports about a single event or topic." Ten Pound Hammer, his otters and a clue-bat • (Many ottersOne batOne hammer) 03:14, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
I agree. Mason invented the Xanadu House, a specific example of a hi-tech house, and promoted it via his 1983 book. The promotion was picked up at the time and mentioned in a few places, including a business publication and apparently was promoted as a tourist attraction. However, there is no evicence of an enduring effect of the Xanadu House concept. Are there any mentions in architectural reviews? Any recent mentions that the Xanadu House plans are even remembered? Is it still a tourist attraction? Are the three houses still standing? I have modern architectural reviews of the period that do not mention it. The two "Further reading" books appear to deal with how technology affects the economy, rather than addressing specifically the effect of Xanadu House. Regards, —mattisse (Talk) 15:06, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
Once again, TPH, have you read Wiki's notability page? Whether the article relies too heavily on certain sources and warrants FA status is an entirely separate question than whether it meets notability. Notability is determined at WP:AFD; your tagging of this article as not meeting notability is unjustified; if you think it is, please take it to AFD. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 15:41, 6 November 2009 (UTC)

Built for tours to match the trends of the time, not the first and unfortunantly not the best[edit]

The first "Foam House" in the Wisconsin Dells area was built as a private house by Fritz and Dona Frusher on top a rocky bluff near Barneveld Wisconsin (just south of the Wisconsin Dells) in 1972.[ref1] They opened it to tours in 1977 but had to close it to tours in 1981 due to not meeting commercial fire standards which would allow the public tours to continue[ref2]. But during short time it was a major tourist attraction in the area (and I, the author of this section visited the amazing house which had at least one room built from spraying an inflated hot air balloon, had a shower with a fish tank in the wall, large natural stone floors, a tower with a second floor master bedroom, third floor sundeck, garage, etc). At the same time Tommy Barlett just came out with its Exploratory which was then called "Tommy Bartlett's Robot World & Exploratory"[ref3]. A spaceship turned on its side which you would walk through to see a glimpse in to the future of living. ABC's "That's Incredible" did a story on the house, and National Geographic came by to do a story.[ref2] In the early 80's the first Xanadu house was being built right next to the main highway into the Dells (951 Stand Rock Rd, Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965). It was built with metal forms, very uniform shapes, and much smaller compared to the Frusher home. So the Xanadu foam houses were really built for tours to match the trends of the time. [ref1] [1] [ref2] [2] [ref3] [3]

— Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:46, 23 December 2015 (UTC) 

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