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Monitor energy use, CO2 emissions via Facebook

wattsonFacebook can provide more than a way to catch up with people you were never close enough to to keep up with in the first place … it now offers an application that can help monitor your home energy use.

Developed by Derek Foster, a computer science student at the University of York, the WattsUp application also lets users assess their carbon dioxide emissions. Foster created the app as part of his project for the MSc in human-centred interactive technologies.

“With so many people using Facebook now, it seemed like a novel approach to incorporate other elements of our lifestyle, such as our household energy consumption, into our online social profiles,” Foster said. “By using Facebook as the delivery platform, it introduces social psychology elements such as peer-pressure and normative behaviour between friends which can introduce competitiveness to reduce energy usage.”

The domestic sector accounts for about 30 per cent of all energy consumed in the UK. Foster’s Facebook application aims to raise awareness of energy consumption in the home to both reduce usage and have a positive impact on climate change.

The WattsUp application records users’ live and historical household energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions via DIY Kyoto’s Wattson energy monitor.

The developers of the Microsoft Facebook Development Toolkit selected WattsUp as a novel application finalist and are planning to publish an upcoming special article on the Microsoft Developers Network (MSDN).

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