Energy visibility

Our electric utility recently replaced our meter box with a digital one that somewhat magically sends its data back to the mothership. The cool bonus of this is that we can track our energy usage along a number of metrics. The online monitoring application isn’t super-sophisticated and I’d like more flexibility in how it aggregates data, but it does give us a window into how we use power. Not surprisingly, our usage increases in the morning, evening, and weekends. But what we hadn’t expected to see was just how much the usage spiked when the hot tub timer switched on. Turns out it’s a whole lot easier to not be “hot tub people” when you can see just how much power it’s using (and money costing).

Lightroom 2: Related Keywords are Dreamy

As it happens, Lightroom 2.0 has just the thing I daydreamed about a handful of months ago. The new version’s data includes a table of keyword co-occurrences that makes it possible to produce things like this:

My flickr tag neighborhood

This graph shows keyword relationships that occur within a hop from my “flickr” keyword — which I use to keep track of photos that I upload there. In other words, it’s sort of a descriptive keyword neighborhood of what I’ve put up on flickr.

Color is a little subjective. The darker blue, the higher the ratio between unique neighbors and total neighbors. That is, darker blue nodes are connected to relatively few unique other neighbors than the lighter blue nodes.

Of course, you could use any focal keyword for this kind of thing: Starting with a lens-specific keyword would produce a rough map of the neighborhood associated with that lens, and might reveal how I tend to use that lens. The possibilities are pretty endless — and totally a fun kick in the pants to tinker with.

About, the short version

I’m a sociologist-errant. This site is powered by Textpattern, Pair Networks and the sociological imagination. For more about me and this site, see the long version.

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