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Multi-purpose windows

from Daizen News, 15 Oct 2011

The jobs of a window are to (1) bring light in, (2) expose a view, or (3) exchange air. A classic picture window accomplishes the first two, usually becoming a focal point in a room as well; all other opening windows (such as hinged casement,  horizontal sliding, or double-hung sash) exchange air.  They may also bring light in or allow a view, but windows that open rarely accomplish all three goals equally well.

Certainly a uniquely-shaped window can be best at adding light and showing off a view. Integrating an opening mechanism is a challenge for an odd-shaped window, such as the circle in this example. My first thought was to place an electric fan in window frame that works both ways (air in and air out), but the air pressure differential is sufficient on its own to exchange the air.

I prefer a low-tech, non-mechanized solution where possible, so I simply placed ventilation holes in the window frame to fulfill the important third function of exchanging air.

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