Goolgle Takes Big Step in AEC World

Google may be your favorite search engine, but they just took another step into another part of your life, well that is if you have a Nest thermostat in your home. Google understands the conservation of power on the grid is one way we can help create a more sustainable environment, so the Nest programmable / learning thermostat is a logical acquisition for them. Besides it gives them a platform to allow them to understand more about the living cycles of one of the most active buying segments in our economy.

You may be a skeptic or a naysayer, but, as the saying goes, "The train has already left the station." when it comes to the advent of the "internet of things." Nest is just another one of a growing segment of things which are connected to the larger electronic network we all live in.

Will these 'things' make our lives better than before? Will they provide more security, convenience or are they just part of the trappings of the social force of consumerism's "I Want That..." which pervades our every waking moment? I for one hope it becomes a transparent part of the infrastructure which allows our homes and offices to operate more efficiently without threatening our lives or well being. (Slate article)

Those of us on the scary edge of integrated technology are urging us to leverage technology to help keep tighter control of our use of energy and water. The Nest is a good example of that technology in a segment of energy use which is fortunately shrinking each year, namely the residential energy sector. I haven't seen the most recent numbers, but all of us know every new home built is significantly more efficient, some claiming to be over 50% more so than homes built just 10 years ago or less. 

So, even if you won't go out and buy a Nest soon, Google's 3.2 Billion bet is a strong indicator at least some of your friends and neighbors will be.

Chime in with your thoughts and let's get a conversation going, that is if you dare.

This is a continuing conversation about the strings of connections in our built environment we live in.


  1. I hope all my neighbors get one!! But seriously, having some Dark Overlord shut down my electric oven to avoid a brown/black-out is better than the power grid going down completely.

    1. I'm not so worried about the power company using the device to shut my house down as I am about the data being hacked to gain access to information about how my activity patterns evolve and use that for other invasive purposes.
      As to the power company cutting back your power, they can already do that with the smart meters that monitor your daily usage where they are installed and the balancing control software is installed in their distribution network. They don't need Nest for that.

    2. Putting a radio and a couple of lamps on timers no longer keeps the boogie man away, I fear. Hopefully we can use grid power to build home-grown power gathering/storage systems, with perhaps at most "neighborhood sized" micro grids. Of course that would require my actually knowing and trusting my neighbors! Not there yet....