A thermostat smarter than a power engineer (yes, it's the Nest)

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By: SGN Staff

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Quick Take: The Nest thermostat is marketed for end users who do NOT know much about electric power. But what would happen if a top power engineer was to install it at his home? Dr. Aaron Snyder is the Deputy Director of Smart Grid Labs, where the motto is something like "in God we trust... and everything else we test." You'll be interested to read his experiences. As you'll see, the Nest was better at figuring out the right settings than he was. - By Jesse Berst

 

By Dr. Aaron Snyder

 

I came home a few weeks ago and found a nest in my house. Two of them, in fact! While this might evoke thoughts of living in a barn, the reality is my wife installed two NEST thermostats. These thermostats are sharp looking, and pretty cool too. Round like the thermostat of my youth, they include a bright display that has a sensor to activate, Wi-Fi connectivity, and a free application (App) for our smart devices (iPad and iPhone).

 

Installation is straight forward, and since commissioned to our home network and an account created, we can access them anywhere our smart devices have connectivity. Through the App we can see status, change the settings, and get an idea of our daily heating and cooling usage. We do live where electricity is sold on a flat rate, so the tie between usage and cost is direct.

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