March 27, 2009 by Steven Castle
Tweet-A-Watt upgrade kits, which allow you to tweet the energy consumption of a device via a Kill-A-Watt power meter, are now available. Tweet-A-Watt recently won the Greener Gadgets competition for its social-media energy monitoring design.
Here’s how it works, according to the website: “The modified Kill-a-Watt uses a ‘super-cap’ to slowly recharge itself. Once there is enough power it turns on the Xbee wireless module, which transmits the data to a nearby computer (or Internet connected microcontroller like an Arduino). Once the power usage for the day is recorded it uses a predefined Twitter account (it can be your own) to publish your daily KWH consumption for the day. Multiple units can be used for an entire household.”
Developers say the Tweet-A-Watt can work with Twitter, Google app engine or anything that can display data. “We feel there is a social imperative and joy in publishing one’s own daily KWH,” the web site says. Studies also show that having access to energy consumption data can lower your energy usage by as much as 20 percent.
A Tweet-A-Watt starter pack for one outlet and add-on kits are available, for $90 and $40, respectively. You supply the Kill-A-Watt.
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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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