in other words: Using Cell Phones to Create a Feedback Loop
Increased communication and feedback via cell phones could foster a sense of collaboration between inspectors and contractors while instilling a common purpose. A team approach to learning and continuous improvement could be a very nice by-product. Taking a systems approach and incorporating feedback loops helps create a true learning organization.
in other words: $250 for a Thermostat?!
Programmable thermostats are available for a little more than $50: why would any rational person spend four to five times that price for a Nest or other comparable wifi-enabled smart thermostat?
A Pattern Language for Residential Energy Efficiency
I am creating a Pattern Language for Residential Energy Efficiency to understand the recurrent patterns that we encounter and develop a rule-based process to identify effective approaches in delivering energy efficiency services to communities, buildings, and households.
Look Before You Leap: Being a Desk Jockey Can Help You Do an Energy Audit
In this post, we’ll describe how you can gather important information about the house prior to the visit while sitting at your desk. Thanks to the Internet, you could begin filling out the audit form before stepping into your car and even perform a visual inspection of the exterior of the house. We'll discuss available tools and useful analyses that can help prepare and expedite your house visit.
ACEEE Hot Water Forum
Ben Schoenbauer recently attended the 5th annual ACEEE Hot Water Forum, held in Berkeley, CA May 21 - 23. i.e. caught up with him after his return, and asked him some questions about the latest and greatest ideas on display for saving energy in water heating.
in other words: Understanding How to Interpret Your Energy Use
With the increasing trend of customer feedback reports supplied by utilities as well as the greater accessibility to energy use data via smart thermostats, the smart grid and Green Button, now may be a good time to think about visual communication, visual literacy, and education.
Productivity in the Cloud
Cloud computing moves software and data from local servers to store it on servers in remote locations. It has been said to provide energy efficiency benefits compared to in-house servers. Working in the cloud also enhances productivity, communication, and collaboration.
The Nest Thermostat: Saving Energy Can Be Fun
In this guest post, CEE's IT Manager Tom Spielman tests out a Nest thermostat in his own home. What does it look like? How does it work? And -most importantly- does it actually save energy?
CEE’s Energy Label Hits the Streets
The rollout of our Community Energy Services program in St Louis Park, MN was CEE’s opportunity to pilot our new residential energy label. Since the end of March, CEE field staff have provided over 70 ratings to homeowners who signed up for an energy visit.
In this post, I’ll discuss a couple of concepts for videos that apply new ways of messaging that incorporate ideas from social psychology and marketing.
in other words: Green Button
We are extremely excited about the potential of the Green Button initiative and anticipate its adoption by Minnesota utilities. Actual usage data is extremely valuable in demonstrating the need for energy efficiency actions and for assessing energy savings.
From the Field: CEE Programs and Mobile Devices
We recently interviewed Tom Spielman, Director of IT, and Rich Szydlowski, Director of Engineering and Business Development, for their perspective on the evolution of mobile technologies. Here's our conversation featuring their insight gained incorporating apps and tablets into CEE’s energy programs.
Review: Apps to Expand Smart Phone Communication Beyond Calls and Texts
A smart phone’s novel features can sometimes distract from its original function: to provide instant communication with the outside world. Cell phones are now standard issue for all auditors, and the interactive communication functions of smart phones offer new opportunities during home energy visits.
Review: Commercially Available Apps Adapted for Energy Audits
We believe that smart phones and tablets should be considered essential parts of the home energy auditor’s tool kit. In this review, we will explain how you can use mobile devices and on-the-market apps in the field.
Mobile Devices and Apps for Energy Audits
At the Innovation Exchange, we’re curious how new technologies can save energy, but we don't limit our scope to HVAC systems and insulation. We’re also exploring how advances in information and communication technologies can contribute to energy savings. Over the next few weeks, i.e. will investigate how mobile devices and apps could transform residential energy programs.