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SXSW Interactive 2015

Take the Power Back: Build Your Own Energy Meter

With the rise of IOT and home automation, homes are smarter and more connected. Yet, the promise of smart meters has fallen short. They’re proprietary, expensive, and built for utilities. They don’t give consumers actionable information. People have a right to better understand their energy use. Curb will teach you to build an affordable, open source energy meter.

Typically, 20-30% of people’s electricity bills are from energy they didn’t actively use–lights left on, refrigerator ajar, A/C cranked up when no one’s home…but, without real time feedback it’s impossible to know what contributes to excessive bills.

Curb has a solution, and we’ll share it with you. Curb’s app shows if you’re saving or wasting energy, what you’re spending in real time, and how much your projected monthly bill will be broken down by electrical device and zone in your home. This workshop will give you the know-how to build a home energy meter, connect it to Curb’s free interface, and start saving money.

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  1. How can I figure out how much energy my home is using right now and what that might cost when my bill arrives? Which electrical devices, appliances, and zones in my home use the most power? Learn how to get real time data about your home energy use, set up cost projections, and pinpoint inefficiencies in your home.
  2. Which products do I need to buy? How much should I invest? How can I make the products I already have work together to tell a complete story of my home energy usage? Get insider information on what you really need and what you don’t to have a truly connected home that saves you time, energy, and money.
  3. How can I build my own energy monitor? Get step-by-step instructions on the assembly of your own home energy meter and receiver station.
  4. How can I access the information from my energy monitor? Learn how to install your energy meter inside your circuit breaker box and connect to Curb’s free monitoring dashboard.
  5. How do I find out how my home energy use compares to the norm? Is my home energy use for particular electrical devices, appliances, or zones atypical? If so, what can I do to reduce my energy use? Find out what kind of interesting data you can extract from your energy meter and how to integrate that data with other open databases to make better decisions about energy usage.


  • Erik Norwood, Founder & CEO, Curb


Erik Norwood, Founder & CEO, Curb

Meta Information:

  • Tags: internet of things
  • Event: Interactive
  • Format: Workshop
  • Track: DIY, Hacker and Maker
  • Track 2
  • Level: Advanced
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