I’m an avid reader of those alternative home construction articles. I love the cutting edge designs, innovative use of materials and efficient uses of space. One category in particular is the super lower energy use / energy-generating and enviromentally friendly materials niche. Many if not most of those models are small, modular and semi-portable (in a prefab sort of way). At a glance they might be confused with mobile homes. That stigma aside, I was also fascinated by the emphasis on minimalism. There is a huge difference culturally in what these aspects imply about the owner.
Most of the models I see on the news feeds allot 400 sq feet or less per person. This number is considered poverty level by American standards of living apparently (The Heritage Foundation). However, in Europe that would be consider average if not generous (The Wall Street Journal). In Japan that margin is even greater.
Urban residential zones probably factor heavily as well as family sized (shared living space features scale up more slowly). Just what would you consider your optimal living space size? Would you give up indoor space for more outdoor space? How many living partners (room mates, spouse, children) do you consider average and how do they influence your ideas of optimal living space size.