So who knew? My electricity meter has an “interface” (infrared port) that allows you to read power usage statistics realtime.
A company called Blueline innovations has developed a wireless powercost monitor that transmits the power usage stats back to a display device so you can see how much electricity your using realtime. Even better, if your an NSTAR customer in MA you can get one for 29.95$ before July 31st.
I got my Powercost monitor installed today. The install should have been easy but it took a good hour to get the reader aligned with the sensor on the meter, but now that its working I can start to see the worst offenders ..
Top of the list is the clothes drier at about 3Kwh .. next looks to be the water heater at 2kwh. Our refrigerator is ancient and that looks to pull about 800w much more frequently than it should need to.
Realtime feedback in terms of dollars and cents really makes you think about how much electricity your using.
You can also draw some parallels to the world of SOA. The monitor, while far removed from the world of IT, does give you insight into the operation of the business – in this case my house.
Now I can see if I run my drier for an hour its going to cost me approximately 0.54cents (assuming an effective NSTAR rate of 0.18cents per kw/hour with taxes etc..). The technology is aligned to the house’s capability to consume power. The impact of using a given appliance is immediately visible and traceable. There is also opportunity for improved efficiency as your have deeper insight and control over whats costing you money. All in all – its an incremental step towards a poor mans SOA!