April 01, 2009 by Steven Castle
Energy Efficient Electronics—There’s already a mandate for government agencies to buy energy efficient computers and other gear, but let’s make sure all the TVs in the White House meet the latest Energy Star 3.0 specification for energy efficiency. And look into networking and audio distribution equipment, too. D-Link makes energy-efficient routers and switches for networking, for example. And Knoll Systems and NuVo Technologies offer energy-saving amplifiers and audio systems. My guess is that there’s some music playing when the Obamas work out in the White House gym.
Home Control Systems—An AMX control system is already used in the White House press briefing room. And if home control isn’t used throughout the building and residence, the president should look into those from AMX, Crestron, Control4, HomeLogic, Exceptional Innovation (Lifeware), Savant and others. These systems can virtually run the whole White House and tie together all the subsystems, from lighting, heating and ventilation, security, audio and video, and computer networks. In addition, they can be used to turn electronics on and off—and to cut power to certain devices so they don’t use standby (also known as vampire or phantom) power while “off” but still plugged in. I bet the White House could save some serious ching by emulating this house. Companies like Verdiem also offer products that help computer networks power down.
There are more ways to make the White House greener and high–tech: better programmable thermostats, smart surge strips that cut power to electronics, Greenguard-certified projection screens for the war room, even a new Tweet-A-Watt, which the Eco-geek in chief could use to broadcast energy consumption of his products over Twitter.
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Steven Castle is Electronic House's managing editor. he has been writing about consumer electronics, homes and energy efficiency topics for two decades. He is also the co-founder of GreenTech Advocates
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