Hacked Gadgets Forum

March 7, 2009

SmartSwitch – Hard to Operate when Using Lots of Power

at 5:15 am. Filed under Complex Hacks, Cool Gadgets, Electronic Hacks

 

We have seen lots of intelligent methods of monitoring and curbing energy usage recently. The hacked Kill-a-Watt comes to mind. This SmartSwitch device is a prototype device that would allow you to feel how much energy you are using. If the light switch is hard to turn on that is because you are already using lots of energy and the internal brake is on. This would hopefully make you think about turning off some unnecessary lights in the house before attempting to turn on the light that was hard to operate. Thanks to people like Peter Russo and Brendan Wypich of  Stanford University for thinking outside the box to come up with cool ideas and solutions like this.

"SmartSwitch embeds intelligence into a traditionally simplistic device – the ordinary household light switch. With SmartSwitch, the mindless activity of flipping a switch becomes an informed decision. Equipped with a network connection and a brake pad, the switch provides its user with tactile feedback about the amount of energy being used either within their household or by the electrical grid as a whole."

Via: Slashgear


 

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24 Responses to “SmartSwitch – Hard to Operate when Using Lots of Power”

  1. Maigo Says:

    Uses more power than a 40 watt bulb?

  2. The voice in your head Says:

    Neat, but how much power does it use?

  3. vic Says:

    Hehe, looks like everybody (myself included) has the same reaction : “What, yet another ‘green’ device which continuously consumes power ?”

    According the the comments on the site, it only consumes 50mW. It’s 24/7 though, and amounts to 438Wh over a year. It’s hard to tell from the pictures, but it looks like the brake only consumes power when changing position, leaving only the electronics operating all the time. The power is probably way more than 50mW when the servo motor operates, which may significantly increase average power.

  4. EllisGL Says:

    X11 networkd? or is it X10?

  5. charlotte Says:

    Is that UL listed? what happens when the device shorts out in your “green house” and burns down your house..

  6. Chris Says:

    Good point Charlotte.. What if the Brake gets hot and catches the insulation on fire….. What a lame Idea.

  7. timo Says:

    How about building a better lamp with the spendet time than making such a BS!

  8. Serge Says:

    Although you guys bring up some good points, the entire concept is a step in the right direction. This can help condition people to be more aware of their electricity usage. However, I use Lutron IR dimmers around the house and I never put the lights to full. This dramatically reduces power usage and bulb life expectancy. I’ve also gotten used to turning off the light when I’m not in the room.

  9. Pouncer Says:

    It’s not practical for use in existing homes, since you’d need to rewire the entire house. Since there’s always likely to be more older homes than newer, and most people are not going to justify spending thousands to renovate their homes just to rewire for new light switches.

    Nice idea, but unlikely to catch on. It’s good to be thinking outwardly, but let’s not lose focus on real life ways to save. For instance I can think of at least 5 people I know who would simply change the switch back out, if it became a nuisance, thereby defeating the whole point of this switch.

  10.   SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things by Techno News Feed Says:

    [...] [Via Hacked Gadgets] [...]

  11. SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things | My Blog Channel Says:

    [...] [Via Hacked Gadgets] [...]

  12. SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things | OnOnPig Says:

    [...] the levels of usage to be high. Check out a video of how the whole thing works after the break.[Via Hacked Gadgets] Continue reading SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of thingsFiled under: Misc. [...]

  13. SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things | Technology Blog Says:

    [...] [Via Hacked Gadgets] [...]

  14. SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things | Dan’s Web Says:

    [...] the levels of usage to be high. Check out a video of how the whole thing works after the break.[Via Hacked Gadgets] Continue reading SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of thingsFiled under: Misc. [...]

  15. Your Gadget Guide » Blog Archive » SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things Says:

    [...] [Via Hacked Gadgets] [...]

  16. jopettitt.com » SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things Says:

    [...] SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things Author: Jo | Files under Engadget Conserving energy is one of those things that you may want to do, but you’ve never gotten around to it, and you’re not exactly sure how to start — because, well, thinking about stuff is hard. The SmartSwitch prototype — designed by Peter Russo and Brendan Wypich at Stanford University — works on just that idea: turning lights on and off is a reflexive action that you barely think about… unless you get some resistance. The modded light switch is equipped with a network connection and a brake pad, and each time you try to turn on a light in your home, it makes a judgment about the overall current electricity levels being used, and gives resistance, making the switch harder to turn on, if the network determines the levels of usage to be high. Check out a video of how the whole thing works after the break. [Via Hacked Gadgets] [...]

  17. John Says:

    For some reason, the word “prototype” doesn’t seem to mean anything to some people… (here’s a hint, it means: in progress, proof of concept, not perfected, not final)

    This is a fantastic concept, and if actually developed, could no doubt be refined to counter all of the complaints above regarding energy usage or safety concerns. I think the more subtle information that is transmitted to us when making rapid unconscious decisions, such as when turning on a light, the more opportunity there is to shape these behaviors to more desirable ones… this type of thinking is somewhat difficult to achieve in the design world, but ultimately that much more valuable and worthy of our focus.

  18. SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things | eBooK3p Blog Says:

    [...] [Via Hacked Gadgets] [...]

  19. SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things | bitbucket.kylewelsh.com Says:

    [...] the levels of usage to be high. Check out a video of how the whole thing works after the break.[Via Hacked Gadgets] Continue reading SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of thingsFiled under: Misc. [...]

  20. SmartSwitch prototype makes work out of the simplest of things | Whole Bullshit - Where we take the Bullshit Out! Says:

    [...] [Via Hacked Gadgets] [...]

  21. NA-079-2009-03-12 | Apple Investor Says:

    [...] SmartSwitch – Hard to Operate when Using Lots of Power – Hacked Gadgets – DIY Tech Blog   [...]

  22. Something Is Amiss in Gitmo and Crackpot Nations — on episode 79 « iPhone Says:

    [...] SmartSwitch – Hard to Operate when Using Lots of Power – Hacked Gadgets – DIY Tech Blog [...]

  23. Something Is Amiss in Gitmo and Crackpot Nations — on episode 79 Says:

    [...] SmartSwitch – Hard to Operate when Using Lots of Power – Hacked Gadgets – DIY Tech… [...]

  24. Luigi Fulk Says:

    ˙ţi

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