The Patron Saint of Energy Geeks: A Guest Post

September 18, 2009 at 1:32 pm 6 comments

We all love IBM’s Andy Stanford Clark, the seed around which the HomeCamp community initially crystallised, so we’re very happy to have him posting here.

I gave a talk at HomeCamp’08, telling everyone about my home automation system, energy monitoring, and of course my electronic mousetraps. I thought it was time for an update. More recently I’ve linked my automated home up to Twitter, so I get an ambient, background, sense of what’s happening at home, and home much power we’re using.
Like for example, every five pounds worth of electricity each month I get a twitter message. When the phone rings, I get a direct message from twitter to my phone as an SMS, telling me who called, so I can decided whether to call them back.

This recently picked up quite a lot of media attention, and my house appeared on the BBC News – here’s Rory Cellan-Jones’ blog about it –  Things That Tweet and here’s the news piece that went out on BBC and a few other places round the world.

Richard MacManus recently wrote in ReadWriteWeb about the “Internet of Things“, the House that Twitters, and the IBM vision of a Smarter Planet, that is Instrumented, Interconnected and Intelligent. That’s what it’s all about, and that’s why HomeCamp, and the great community around it, are so important.

And of course, as we move outwards from the home, into the Smart energy grid, we have to work out how to integrate micro-generation capabilities – wind and solar at people’s houses, and manage the recharging of hybrid and electric vehicles. Having everything fitted with sensors, talking to the internet, and applying significant compute power to make sense of that sea of data, becomes increasingly essential to running the system efficiently. This is described in an article in the Guardian recently.

photo credit Benjamin Ellis.

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Useful links and news stories Energy Camp 3 UK: The Autumn Edition

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