I thknk the point was not traditional-versus-modern, but rather, not simply throwing away ideas that work well, merely because they don't appear to be new. ((I say "appear to be" only because it seems to happen fairly often that "new" ideas are basically reinterpretations or rediscoveries of "old" ideas.))
Often, people do get so caught-up in being "new", that they rush into it and don't think enough about what actually works.
IOW, I think the OP's point was about *blending* traditional and modern techniques so as to make the best use of what *works* in a given climate.
For example, I remember driving through newly-built areas in Inland Southern California, and seeing not one single extended eave, or one single porch, or *anything* that hinted at being an overhang. That was just stupid, given the climate and the cost (both financial and environmental) of wasted air-conditioning.
effeciency and comfort are ebst served when what's used is what works, and that means both developing new techniques/designs, *and* adapting past-and-proven techniques/designs.