Does Apple's iPhone really have "an application for everything?" Benson Hougland thinks so. He built his own energy monitor for use in his home. A programmable automation controller, a power-monitoring I/O module, and two current transformers let him measure current and voltage to provide power-use data in real time. And Benson can tap into his system to collect power-consumption data from anywhere and view it on his Apple iPhone. The result? An interactive, real-time awareness of energy use that helped him save $200 a month on his power bill.
Californiaís plan to mandate an electric vehicle market isnít the first such undertaking and certainly wonít be the last. But as the Golden State ratchets up for its next big step toward zero-emission vehicle status in 2018, it might be wise to consider a bit of history.