To waste or not to waste

Since a young age, I had been taught by my mother not to waste, especially precious resources like water, power, food and yes money too (she still thinks that I’m a spendthrift) . I reckon that my mother understood well about the importance of minimizing waste before carbon footprint appeared in our vocabulary. Up to today, I cringe whenever I see people wasting. As a case in point I once saw a guy leaving the water hose running at his front porch, he was presumably watering his plants, except that there were no plants there and he was doing something else. Although water was free and remains so in my birth state of Selangor, there is absolutely no excuse to leave the tap running for no reason.

While the case above was very much about with social behavior and civic mindedness (or the lack of it), I believe that technology and product innovations around our everyday things, be it appliances, devices, gadgets, wearable devices, or just about anything you own could provide positive implications in conserving resources. The Internet of Your Things could provide means to improve efficiency and minimize waste.

If things could communicate real-time information to each other or via an intelligent systems service, there is a real possibility that power and fuel consumption could fall. The Nest learning thermostat is one such product innovation that helps you save on your energy bill by learning your usage patterns. It could interact with other things too. In my previous post I mentioned a scenario that I would like to cater for which is to alert my family once I’d finished my ride in the trails and when I’m riding or driving home, including my ETA. If it’s winter, it may be good to get that heater warming the bathroom so that it’s all nice and warm when I take my shower or a hot tub bath. It is possible with the Nest and drum roll please… a Mercedes.


No pun intended but I doubt that I would buy a Mercedes just so that my car could tell Nest that I’m on my way home and make it warm and comfortable as soon as I get home. If I did, then this would just prove that my mother was right, that I’m a spendthrift and this negates the reason why I should minimize waste. Hence I’ll try to build my own thing, and application on top of an intelligent systems service to try to enable this scenario. Maybe there are some projects readily available out there, which is great!

Meanwhile I’ll put on my “pastry chef” hat and see what I could do with “raspberryfai” being at my service. I trust there are umpteen scenarios in this uncharted territory of smart things. Do comment and please let me know.

Note: This post was originally posted on my LinkedIn. I still haven’t decided how I will segregate the musings and the technical posts. Meanwhile I’ll just repost every thing I wrote.

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