The most ambitious component is a pair of opt-in energy-saving programs that kick in when demand for energy is at its highest. When these periods roll around, Nest owners can rack up extra savings by letting the thermostat intelligently decrease their household’s energy needs. And it’s not just the homeowner who benefits: Nest’s new features are also intended to serve another class of customers entirely: the utility companies.
On Friday night mingling in the recently opened collaborative space for start-ups AlleyNYC were people from different walks of life, each with an interest in the area or an idea. There was a psychiatrist who wanted to create crowd-funded solar projects, and someone who works in an IT department of a consumer magazine who’s interested in developing apps that would help increase the fuel economy of cars. Over the weekend, some 200 people participated in the hackathon.
By Sunday, judges picked three winners: Green Building Banner, a Google Chrome plug-in that brings energy data to consumers; Lean Green Stormwater, an online tool, which allows facility owners to calculate stormwater charges and savings under various stormwater mitigation investments; and Parkifi, a mobile app that helps users find a New York park with a Wi-Fi hotspot.