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Plugwise has something to say, about your energy use.

Plugwise is a company making various devices to assist in energy savings. The devices that target’s standby energy usage… sometimes called ghost loads, are mostly what this post is about. Unlike a lot of energy savings devices, Plugwise is not marketed exclusively to the home market, as plug loads happen every where! They suggest that

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the Loop: Keeping you, …well, in the loop

Momentarily stepping away from the land of the experimental, the Loop energy savings kit is a very reasonably priced, off-the-shelf tool available for UK home-based energy savings. Created by Navetas, “a UK based technology company delivering cloud-based energy monitoring and smart data analytics for the connected home,” the system, which works independently of one’s energy provider, tracks electricity use,

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O rly? A smiley face makes an impact with OPower.

“If something is inconvenient, even if we believe in it, moral suasion, financial incentives, don’t do much to move us — but social pressure, that’s powerful stuff.” – Alex Laskey For years Robert Cialdini, author of the must-read social psychology book Influence, has been studying the impact of social norms on behavior change and pro-environmental

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The new normal: Shaping norms with real-time data.

I was really happy to discover the city of Montreal had installed an eco-counter for one of it’s bike lanes in the Plateau-Mont Royal borough earlier this year. It’s located right outside of the Laurier street exit of the Laurier metro station, which is in a residential area north of the city’s downtown. The space

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A Wee Water Saver: the Waterpebble

  The story goes that Paul Priestman, a director of design at Priestmangoode, conceived of this idea after reading a simple sign in a hotel bathroom. The sign asked to “Please Use Water Sparingly.” In one article I read he suggested the sign was stupid… but look what it lead to… not long after reading it, the

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The Nest thermostat learns what to do to keep you comfy. Hopefully it teaches you a thing or two in the process.

Energy savings could certainly use a little sex appeal. Enter the fine folks who helped develop the now ubiquitous iPod and iPhone – products that revolutionized the smart phone market and virtually insured that most North Americans carry a tiny computational device in their pocket or purse. It was only a matter of time before the

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Green Ticker: counting the number of water bottles NOT used.

Before class, I like to fill up a bottle of water so that I have something on hand in the event that my throat becomes parched from all the talking that one naturally does as a lecturer. Not so long ago McGill University‘s Bronfman building installed a new filling station to make it easier to

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Gauging energy use: the Ford SmartGauge

Hybrid cars have been a source for some innovation related to the visualization of energy use in cars. Ford’s 2010 Fusion and Mercury Milan hybrids are no exception, as they come equipped with “Ford’s SmartGauge with EcoGuide,” the result of a collaboration between Ford and world renowned design and innovation firm, IDEO. The analog speedometer is bookended by

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“Save energy or the bear gets it”

Anyone who has spent anytime considering environmental messaging will have noticed that the polar bear frequently being used as a symbol of the impact of global warming on the animal kingdom. Perhaps it’s no surprise then that eco-feedback designers might be interested in leveraging the concern that many people seem to have for the iconic giant white bear

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Eco Showerdrop: water savings by the drop

Much like the Show-Me, the commercially available Eco Showerdrop is a tool to help you better understand how much water you are consuming in the shower.  This product compares your consumption to the “recommended amount”  which is 35 liters, according to the information on the company’s website.  The digital display includes a duration of shower, volume in liters and an outline of a

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