Natural Fuse

natural_fuseHere’s an interesting one: Natural Fuse – an Internet of Things device for sharing your carbon footprint responsibility.

The Natural Fuse was a project which used plants as ‘fuses’ based on your use of an electrical appliance. It encourages people to cooperatively be aware of their energy expenditure using networked devices which keep the plants alive. The less energy you use, the more the system takes care of the plants. If you overuse, a random plant may have to be killed off, affecting others on your network.

Not so good for the plants, but a good use of the IoT and networked awareness.

On another note, it’s interesting that the underlying system  – Pachube – does not work anymore. The project is from 2009, the heyday of Pachube, and also around the time that I began to use Pachube to revisualise IoT data. Since then, the demise, resurrection and rebranding of Pachube into Cosm and Xively has broken many an interesting IoT app. It’s a lesson in how these seemingly open and community-based systems can upset a nascent movement for monetisation.

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