Jan 2012

Adrian Friday, Ubicomp as a Lens on Energy Related Practice in Shared Student Accommodation


Adrian Friday

Adrian Friday

Previous work in eco-feedback has focused either on new sensing technologies, or on people’s responses to specific feedback devices and other interventions placed in their homes. We attempt to take a comprehensive approach based on a large scale deployment of off the shelf sensors coupled with face to face interviews to account for both the amount of energy that specific appliances draw upon, and what occupant practices rely upon the services provided by these appliances. We performed a study in four student flats (each with 7–8 occupants) over a twenty-day period, collecting data from over two hundred sensors and conducting interviews with 11 participants. We build an account of life in the flats, and how that connects to the energy consumed. Our goal is to understand the challenges in accounting for both resources and practices at home, and what these challenges mean for the design of future feedback devices and interventions aimed at reducing energy consumption. In this talk we share results of our recent analysis and our experiences of conducting Ubicomp deployments using off the shelf sensors to study energy use.