Does the European Data Protection Supervisor also have a business that sells tin foil hats?
The European Data Protection Supervisor has warned that smart meters are a significant privacy threat and wants limits on the retention and use of customer data before it's too late. The EDPS is an independent authority figure tasked with identifying where EU policies might represent a risk to privacy. He reckons next- …
"The real way to reduce power consumption is by using smart appliances - such as a washing machine that can be configured to run during the night"
Erm. How does running a washing machine at a different time reduce consumption? All it does is move it to a different time. Reducing consumption can only be done by, you know, using less. Ie. More energy efficient homes.
@Jim, I agree, in my current house, but my in-laws wouldn't have an issue, due to their washing machine being miles away from the bedrooms. Also, I wouldn't have an issue with my fridge being told to stay off for 15mins or so, or my dehumidifier being off for a similar amount of time.
I used to "time shift" my laundry, I'd put washing in at night and set a time switch on the plug so the appliance would come on early in the morning and would be finished by the time I woke up (the machine being right at the other end of my house from my bedroom).
However now I can't do that because on my new machine there's no mechanical "on-off" button which will let me leave it "switched on" but with nothing happening until the time switch on the plug activates it, just a "soft touch" button which needs pressing before anything happens.
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"pattern of energy consumed by a decent flat-screen TV can be used to work out what programme is being watched"
All the more reason to turn off the dynamic picture-screw-up options and leave the backlights running at constant brightness all the time. Looks more natural anyway, like an old CRT.
No way around it when OLED takes over though, no backlight on those.
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ssshhhssshshshshhshshshshshshshshhswushwushssshshshshshshsh bleep bleep bleep KLANK!!!
That's more or less how my washing machine runs. Just bought it last month after 20+ years of the old on. It's whisper silent. Other than the configurable bleeps that signify the end of the washing and the KLANK that means the relay to disconnect it from the power got triggered(which is actually heard while the bleeps aren't really heard).
And this is a 1600rpm model at that.
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Has anyone ever enjoyed using that? Everyone I have ever known always starts of really smug (I don't know why) when they switch to it and from that moment on it just leads to ever increasingly bizarre behaviour (running downstairs at 2am to switch the washing machine on) and recriminations (when they didn't as it had to be done at the crippling day rate).
They all end up nervous wrecks on Economy 7.
only within our mulch-tentacle own corporation selling energy, condoms, tellies, ISP services, insurance, washing powder, etc, and then, naturally, bound by the legal requirements, we're obliged to share this information with first parties, such as "law enforcement agencies" and other "government agencies" (your local council loves you!) and second parties, i.e. "carefully selected business partners".
And, ehm...sorry about this leak of 5 mln data files on our customers last night, it won't happen again, we promise to encrypt them. Next time. No, really, seriously, it's a promise, we take privacy of our customers really seriously.
"That might sound fanciful, but researchers have already demonstrated that the pattern of energy consumed by a decent flat-screen TV can be used to work out what programme is being watched, and Hustinx is probably right that this isn't information most of us would wish to share with our electricity providers."
So there are model behaviours apparently for different types of kit.
A tablet running various models could also be used to turn on and off different loads to mimic varoius domestic appliances.
"No officer, I haven't got a loft full of weed, that's just the breadmaker, dishwasher, washing machine and the rest all coming on."
If you are going to have weed in the attic, it is way better to insulate your walls, floor and roof, use mylar in walls and put a hefty (but silent) ventilation system. You should also have an insulated diesel generator (using the fuel for the heater), and the exhaust should go up, to the roof.
No other way to be safe!!
Anonymous.. you know why...
An article of faith indeed.
We already *know* how much energy we're using; we get a sharp reminder every three months. And if we want to see it in real time, we can go into the garage or the garden or the cupboard under the stairs and watch the bloody disc spinning around.
There is absolutely no point, no rhyme nor reason, why this should be implemented, other than for the gratification of the 'ooh look, we're doing something crowd'.
As indicated earlier, get some nukes built. Now.
@Neil - The reminder every three months is how much energy you have used. A dynamic display in your front room or kitchen, wherever, is how much you are using. It's pretty hard to see the impact of running your washing machine from a three monthly bill, it's pretty easy from a dynamic display.
I already have a dynamic display - much like Neils', it's that disc spinning like a top that makes me realise I'm chewing through enough power to run a third world village for a week, every time I do my whites.
I don't need to see that in KW/h on a digital display with tactical mapping and a frowny cartoon character telling me off - I already know how much power my washing machine uses.
"A metric shitload".
Again, the spinning wheel doesn't really show you how much you're using, it's also usually in a cupboard in which case it doesn't show you at all what you're using. In a previous life I was an electrical engineer and thought I had a pretty good idea about how much power different appliances used in the house, until I setup a system to log power usage. You learn a lot when you do that, especially for things like washing machines.
The advantage of the smartmeter to the energy distributor is that they can 'load modulate' at any time. The meters can (presumably) be programmed OTA to lower their trip level to just 13 Amps, or 5 Amps. I'm not talking about a single appliance eventually being made smart - but when remotely your entire house (due to global warming or just generic lack of energy due to underinvestment whatever) is given the option - do you want 3 kilowatts or not? - then a smartmeter is the tool of remote control.
I said (presumably) above as I've been trying to get my hands on one to test in the lab, my domotically installed smartmeters ( I now have 3) were over the air upgraded to 5kW, but to get an isolated specimen for testing is not that easy
(C) Strummer/Jones "Remote Control" CBS S CBS 5293 (1977)
Who needs remote control
From the Civic Hall
Push a button
You gotta work an' you're late
It's so grey in London town
With a panda car crawling around
Here it comes
Where can we go now?
Can't make a noise
Can't get no gear
Can't make no money
Can't get outta here
Big business it don't like you
It don't like the things you do
You got no money
So you got no power <<<<------- I think this line refers to remote control of the smartmeter???
They think you're useless
An' so you are - puuuuuuunnnnnk!
They had a meeting in Mayfair
They got you down an'
They wanna keep you there
It makes them worried
Their bank accounts
That's all that matters
And you don't count
Can't make no progress
Can't get ahead
Can't stop the regress
Don't wanna be dead
Look out' those rules and regulations
Who needs the Parliament
Sitting making laws all day
They're all fat and old
Queuing for the House of Lords
Repression - gonna start on Tuesday
Repression - gonna be a Dalek
Repression - I am a robot
Repression - I obey
Indeed it is/does.
Is there any peer-reviewed evidence that a real-time power monitor makes any difference to how people use power? (Ignoring the issues of potentially poor estimation of power usage.)
I can't help but feel that people who have concern for their usage/cost will already be changing things to suit them, but that there are many who cannot change either their usage nor their timing. Irrespective of what time of day you do it, you still need to do the washing...
It's not peer reviewed, but here's my personal experience...
I got one of those little plug-on thingies that clips round the wire in the meter box and transmits current usage to display in sitting room. And now I know what the background usage should be when I'm watching telly or whatever (including fridge, servers, routers etc) and if the reading is unexpectedly high it reminds me that either I've left the lights in the office on, or forgotten to switch off the hob in the kitchen or whatever - and I go and switch them off. Result, reduced consumption - but NO need for the suppliers to knwo what I'm doing on a minute-by-minute basis. I havefound that now I tend to put more washing on the line rather than using the tumble drier, and pop a few logs on the stove rather than switch on an electric fire or central heating when it's a cool evening.
Personally, if they fit a smart meter for me I'll be fitting the box with a Faraday cage!
First hand only, but it does here in Australia because we use the demon air conditioner. Depending on the age and size of the device it can use an awful lot more electricity than you imagine. Example - come home from work one evening and house is sweltering despite being left largely open all day. Put on the new air-con in the lounge. Usage jumps about 700W for the 5kW unit. Switch on air-con in the kitchen/diner area. Usage jumps up 2.4kW for the 4.5kW unit. Turn off kitchen unit, switch on ceiling fans to circulate air.
If it hadn't have been for the real-time meter we would have had a crippling electricity bill for that summer. It's sometimes surprising just how inefficient older appliances can be. Personally I'd rather be slightly uncomfortable or minimise my time in this area than chew 2.4kW/hr. Some people just pay up. I think I'll just get the thing replaced, eventually.
I'd think that by then solar/wind tech will be much more accessible (ie cheap) and the cost of power from the grid so prohibitive that most people will draw very little from the grid, which would mess up the data some what.
And if not then, I'm going to book a spot on Dragon's Den to market what is essentially a massive capacitor to go inline with the meter that smooths out the data.
How exactly do you suggest my 7 neighbours and I get sufficient electricity from solar/wind in a tenement flat in Glasgow? How would you ensure all 8 flats in the building all get a fair share of the electricity generated?
What about 20+ storey tower blocks?
Generating your own electricity is fine for River Cottage types with lots of land but doesn't work in the city.
>> Smart meters are a surveillance tech? Isn't that their primary reason for any meter to exist?
But your normal meter only records the total quantity used. The supplier gets no information about when you use it, whether you run a light load for long periods, or a heavy load for short periods, whether you are a night owl or an early bird, etc, etc.
Smart meter data will get them a lot of information about your lifestyle, as the article says, an advertisers wet dream and something that everyone should be bothered about.
RE: Tip to bad guys
>> Buy a UPS. Then they can't monitor your consumption patterns for whatever's plugged in.
Sorry, complete and utter rubbish. In normal use, as long as there is mains power then the load on the output will be passed straight through to the supply - hence what the metering reads will be an accurate reflection of what you are using. That will only change if you actually switch off the mains input to the UPS and run the load off batteries - but that has a limited runtime unless you invest in big batteries.
What is likely to happen if dynamic tariffs start putting peak rates up too high - people will get a UPS and use it to avoid paying for peak rates, then recharge during low cost periods. This will **NOT** save energy, it will actually increase consumption since the round trip (charge/discharge cycle) has significant losses - but it is what the authorities want so they can effectively price ration consumption to match the variable and unpredictable output from all those windmills we are paying for.
There are already UPS-like units designed for boats and similar which will use battery power to limit mains draw when loads are high. Expect an updated version of these to be the next big thing to go with your smart meter.
So wind (and to a much lesser extent, other renewables) swallows your cash in many ways :
1) There's the upfront Renewables Obligation Certificates which roughly treble the income (ie cost per unit) for a windmill operator.
2) There's the hidden costs of increasing the variability of demand on other generators - principally gas turbine. Because these other generators have to endure more starts, more (and larger) power variations, that puts their costs up. Because they get to produce less units overall (because they have to shut down when there's the right amount of wind), that puts their per-unit costs up. Mention that on a forum dealing with renewables and prepare to be banned for being abusive !
3) Before long will will be expected to shut down our coal plants - in practice, don't expect that to happen on-time as we've f***-all to replace them with.
4) To deal with all that, plus the failure of successive governments to face up to their obligations and actually plan a secure energy supply (and IMO that does mean embracing nuclear) - it won't be long before we have big problems. Notably, according to many expert forecasts we will cease to have a decent generating reserve - give it a nice cold winter like we had 1 1/2 years ago, demand at a peak, wind doing absolutely f***-all, and we can expect to run out of power. The youngsters won't believe this, but those of middle age and above can remember the rolling blackouts of the 70's - these smart meters will allow that on a finer grained basis.
It's really going to help meet CO2 reduction targets when people start using UPSs on a large scale (add 30% to usage for losses) and diesel generators !
Oh yes, according to UK gov, smart meters won't be compulsory. Yeah, right. You can stick to your old fashioned meter, but be prepared to pay some eye watering rate as punishment.
Do you undertand the difference between an "on-line" and "off-line" UPS?
A ferro-resonant UPS would definitely obscure micro-fluctuations in demand, not to mention those motor-generator sets with spinning inertia that covered our ICL mainframes thirty years ago!
"But your normal meter only records the total quantity used. The supplier gets no information about when you use it, whether you run a light load for long periods, or a heavy load for short periods, whether you are a night owl or an early bird, etc, etc."
So? Those data are no use unless the supplier can force you to change your lifestyle by using energy at different times. The generators are only interested in being able to reduce peak load so as not to have to build as much new generating capacity, and being better able to match demand to wind energy supply.
The supplier only needs to indicate to users in general the level of demand, and then smart equipment can decide when it's most economical to run. The incentive would be a variable tariff that's lowest when demand is slack and/or wind energy is most abundant. The amount could be accumulated by the meter so there's no need for the micro-data to be sent to the supplier at all.
"the failure of successive governments to face up to their obligations and actually plan a secure energy supply"
Privatisation ensured that security of energy supply was left to "the markets", with governments having no influence over the matter.
The result was predictable, and indeed was predicted.
Yes, I believe that Curiously is correct. Given that the recent governments have done nothing with the energy marketplace other than likely bury themselves in utility company shares, they are unlikely to do anything either. Cycled blackouts will likely become commonplace which you may be able to 'buy' your way out of. Also those suffering hardship will lose the lights likely without even been told when.
They will have to, it's too late to do anything about it (well unless the government cut all the red tape and started construction on new power stations tomorrow).
Yes, power stations coal/gas/nuclear, no amount of wimpy wind turbines or wave-powered generators will fill the short fall. What was the recent statistic on a BBC article about the new 'tide turbines'? It would take a thousand or more just to produce the same amount of electricity as the smallest gas powered power station and would cost 100x more. Each turbine having a lifespan of a few years compared to decades for a traditional power station.
Most beam circuits have a design problem of increasing the dynamic range by raising/reducing the EHT voltage in line with the average grid current of the CRT (it's something that's very hard to design _out_ of the average low-cost tube circuit, given the way valves change parameters wildly as they age)
This had the side effect on most 1970-80s designs of increasing/decreasing the overscan slightly(*) - which was a royal pain in the arse if there were large amounts of bright/dark flashing - such as various adverts and your average Dr Who episodes when the cybermen were about.
(*) For some values of slightly, and a couple of bad resistors or dry joints could make most Philips chassis up to the TX9 produce more than just "slight" variations.
Brightness variations in turn cause slight power fluctuations.
So even on a CRT it was possible to deduce what was being watched by observing the power draw.
... can be pretty strange. A few years ago I replaced two multi-bulb lights in the living and dining rooms with recessed 28 watt circular fluorescents. When I got the monitor installed it showed that BOTH of them used approx 125 watts. So I replaced them again. The biggest shock (pun intended) was the 8000 watt Triton electric shower. A daily 10 minute shower and hairwash increased my weekly total by about 50%. Monitors tell you these things in real time which is nice but why the hell should Npower or any other company be continuously supplied with that info? Do they plan to write to me and say stop using the Triton? I have stopped, I invested in a fancy mixer tap which allows me to use the gas boiler for showers. Payback was about 7 months.
>> A few years ago I replaced two multi-bulb lights in the living and dining rooms with recessed 28 watt circular fluorescents. When I got the monitor installed it showed that BOTH of them used approx 125 watts.
WRONG, very, very WRONG.
You have just demonstrated what a pile of s**t most of these so called energy monitors are. Very few have the ability to measure voltage, even fewer have the ability to measure power factor. All they can do is measure current and guess the power - yes, guess.
I see it time and time again where people believe the crap these units tell them - when those with a bit of electrical knowledge could tell thenm that while the flourescent lights may make the 'energy' monitor say they are using 125W, they are in fact using a lot less but at a poor power factor. I suspect a bit of the same is behind the totally rubbish old wives tale that plug in power supplies/chargers take as much power when idle as when in use.
Clip-on "energy monitors" give a result which is only slightly less accurate than reading tea-leaves.
They do not measure voltage or phase angle. The voltage can vary, and different appliances respond differently to changes in voltage: most things draw more current at higher voltages, but switched-mode supplies and some kinds of motor draw less current at higher voltages. And without the phase angle, you can't measure the power factor. A purely inductive or capacitive load only stores and releases energy; it does not change it from one form to another.
A gas combi boiler is much better for showering, as it will be able to put heat into the water 3-4 times as fast as an electric shower heater. And gas costs much less per kWh than electricity. A mains-fed hot water cylinder is even better as you get hot water at mains pressure (like a combi) but it can be heated from a less responsive source e.g. solid fuel, solar panels.
It's great for devices like this to tell US CONSUMERS how much power we're using and where; i'm all in favour of that. The issue is that these systems are going to report this information to your provider who will in turn use it to determine patterns of behaviour (no doubt for harmless, anonymised targetted marketing models). It is already the intention that the powers that be will then use this information to limit and control the amount of power you are permitted to consume and when you are permitted to consume it.
"It also gives utility companies the ability to reduce consumption by communicating to devices directly..."
So, you will, eventually, not decide what devices you will have operating in your home, when you may operate them, what is done with the information gathered on your usage, possibly face criminal proceedings for "excessive usage" and have your usage shown to your neighbours either as an example of how they should behave or how energy-greedy you are compared to them.
Social control anyone? Or do you want to carry on cracking jokes about tinfoil? Now, go and do some research into how RFID will be applied in a similar "smart grid" for objects (like your car, your possessions or even, if some americans get their way, you and your children) and line them up with the Energy Grid and the "improvements" to data interception.
Still think I'm paranoid? Still think I have no reason to be paying attention to the bigger picture? Then I would suggest you are blind to history and gullible to a fault.
Trust the powers if you want. Personally, I don't think it takes much intellect to realise that government and corporate interests cannot be trusted one whit.
"Monitors" (such as British Gas give to customers for free) are fun and informative. I know what costs what in the house now, have verified the new washing machine & fridge are actually more cost effective, and that all the "stuff of standby/permanently on" stuff in the house (like DECT phone base stations) costs me 9p an hour, to "idle" the house - so there is room for improvement (save pennies), which I like to know.
However, "Smart Meters" which collate and distribute said information for other people (gummint or power companies) - not something I want. I don't tell BP where/when/how fast/slow I drive my car - I just pay for what I need/use.
>> "Monitors" (such as British Gas give to customers for free) are fun and informative
>>and that all the "stuff of standby/permanently on" stuff in the house (like DECT phone base stations) costs me 9p an hour, to "idle" the house
See above, these 'energy' monitors do not tell you how much power you are using. They measure current and guess at power. Particularly at idle, a lot of stuff has a poor power factor so these 'energy guessers' over read by a huge amount. God only knows how they get past trading standards.
They are a con.
There are monitors which will report power - but they usually need wiring in as they need a voltage connection. Nothing that "clips on a meter tail" can tell you anything useful or accurate.
Depends on the monitor you use.
I have one of these "plug-through" monitors, it measures instantaneous voltage, current, and phase angle (and thus power factor). Picked it up at the local supermarket for a few quid.
With very light loads (less than say 10VA) it's not that accurate, but otherwise it works well, even with highly non-linear loads such as switching power supplies. Verified that by plugging in an old ATX PSU and applying various loads to its outputs while monitoring voltage and current waveforms with the classical tools of the trade.
Using said monitor on various pieces of electrical equipment has resulted in some interesting observations...
* Power consumption of CRT displays does indeed vary significantly with average brightness;
* So does the power consumption of my P4 desktop machine according to processor load;
* Modest but nonetheless significant (amounts to about 3 quid on a bi-monthly bill of 80 quid) power savings can be had by switching off ancillary equipment such as modems, routers and switches when nobody uses them;
and so on and so forth.
But your BMW definitely tells BMW how you drive, whether you accelerate and brake hard, and which person was driving (well, which key they were using - that's why the wife and I swap keys every couple of days).
I suspect this is true of all modern cars that have EMU's fitted.
I confess I don't know! I've read of US smartmeters which use public 2.4GHz Wi-Fi to nearby streetlamp access points. I've also read of GSM/GPRS based smartmeters - which would bad enough in itself given the relative ease that GPRS can be decrypted these days. The old AM transistor radio detuned from a station & held next to the meter might indicate if staccato Wi-Fi/GSM bursts or indeed audio-tone FSK over the power bearer is being used. I've heard rather a lot of frequency shift key data in or near the longwave band (150KHz) around power transmission lines but I put that down to old SCADA systems.
I haven't seen the FSK hardware at local CEGB substations (which would tend to filter it out) so I suspect it is a radio borne system, there will be a CEN/CENELEC standard somewhere!
Wrapping the meter itself in aluminium foil might be a valid and legal way to control information flow.
A cupboard under the stairs - unless the door is actually sealed with wiping contacts of RF 'fingerstock' will have a slot antenna around the door gap - hence not be a true electromagnetically shielded 'tempest' environment. Problem is that when GSM/GPRS modems start to perceive low RSSI they just boost power up to several watts @ 860MHz, this would presumably put-up your eleccy bill as I bet the smartmeter ICT itself is powered by the customer side of the system!?
I realise that politicians and academics who leech a very nice income from the public purse for a living may live with a casual abandon about utility bills but my off peak use is already flogged as hard as I can.. not for any other reason than its cheaper...
Whatever I use at peak rate is what I *need* to use.. I need no smart meter.. or the cost that will go with it to me to replace it - probably by one of the politicians much loved stealth taxes.
Another policy predicated on a falsehood that will do little more than load another cost onto the consumer that should be borne by the utility companies.
The simple truth is it needs to be illegal for the data collected to be used for any other purpose than billing us, and should not be able to be passed on - even with identifiers stripped out - to a third party
I'm sure our corrupt politicians are even now working out how to sell more of our privacy to data hungry corporations in exchange for generous party donations
Coat... Slip the bung in the plain brown envelope in the party chiefs left pocket please
So they can tell what program your TV is watching? Big deal. My set top box is already selling that info back to the cable company.
I'd worry about meters that provide real time data which some tech savvy thieves can use to scan a neighborhood and figure out who is on vacation. Or during what times of the day your house is empty.
I have to laugh at this. Of course smart meters are meant for surveillance purposes. God only knows how all the data gathered will be used but you can be assured whoever is gathering the data will be about as benevolent as Google and Facebook are in building user profiles.
Here, where I live, the city offered free smart thermostats to people, heck they would even install them for you free of charge. I know several allegedly smart people who feel for the trick. Summer hit and it's a comfy 40C outside and you've just cooked dinner and guess what? Even though it's 32C in the house the air conditioning won't turn on because you gave the power company and government control over your thermostat. You got to enjoy the sweltering heat until 8:30pm when the peak usage hours were over and "they" allowed you to have AC once again. I don't know a single progressive greeny that kept their free thermostat.
Some of the scariest words you'll ever hear: "I'm from the government, I'm here to help."
What about the wireless energy sensors that report back to the monitors themselves?
Most of them operate around 433.92 MHz. If you listen around this frequency with an RF scanner you'll soon hear the periodic 'chirp...chirp' of data from these devices (in a typical urban area there are now dozens of such signals on adjacent channels.)
Using a receiver such the Owl USB Connect you could decode the output and plot energy use on a spreadsheet - both your own, and your neighbour's too in theory. There seems to be no encryption.
A bit of a worry because potential thieves could easily build up a picture of when a householder is at home or away.
Mine DOES get power factor. Otherwise it was useless...
But don't worry, at least here in Spain, with the new meters they are going to charge also for "power factor".. so yes, in some years those bad quality meters are going to be useful.
As for generating electricity with solar panels, here in spain it is about 3 times CHEAPER than grid electricity. Except that you only have leccy during the day... except yout can't store it... If you get batteries, then it is about the same (currently) price, but you have to pay upfront and theives can steal your pricey panels.
"That might sound fanciful, but researchers have already demonstrated that the pattern of energy consumed by a decent flat-screen TV can be used to work out what programme is being watched..."
This is the second time this has been suggested here in the last week or so but I'm sceptical about the ability to do this via smart meters which give an overall power consumption for a house every five seconds.
I can see you could probably do it in a lab with sensitive power meters but at a resolution of 5 seconds and with all the other noise you get from other devices...?
It was done in Germany, I'll have to dig for the link...try this... http://epic.org/privacy/smartgrid/smart_meter.pdf quote "Our research shows that the analysis of the household’s electricity usage profile at a 0.5s−1 sample rate does reveal what channel the TV set in the household was displaying" there are approaches such as this paper from Toshiba Bristol who propose a rechargeable battery randomly charging/discharging noise. http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/login.jsp?tp=&arnumber=5622047&url=http%3A%2F%2Fieeexplore.ieee.org%2Fxpls%2Fabs_all.jsp%3Farnumber%3D5622047 sorry subscription to IEE required or the usual tricks! ( "Privacy for Smart Meters: Towards Undetectable Appliance Load Signatures"
Conference Location : Gaithersburg, MD
Print ISBN: 978-1-4244-6510-1
INSPEC Accession Number: 11630395
Digital Object Identifier : 10.1109/SMARTGRID.2010.5622047
Date of Current Version : 04 November 2010
Issue Date : 4-6 Oct. 2010
I recall reading that it is also possible to detect the programs running on a PC by measuring the power consumption.
So if say someone was to write a virus that "pulsed" the CPU loading regularly with a pattern dependent on say the last 3 digits of the Windows key then they could detect which machines in an area were infected.
DO NOT SWITCH OVER TO SMART METERS. Smart meters do not save money, they cost more. Smart meters do not save energy, they use more. Everywhere smart meters are installed, people get sick from them. Smart meters expose us to 160 times the radiation of one cell phone. Smart meters are unhealthy and even a national physicians' association (AAEM) has issued strong warnings against installing them. Smart meters cause some people to become homeless as they get so sick they can't live in their homes. The cost of the sick and additionally disabled and homeless people will burden a community forever. Smart meters only benefit the utilities, until they get sued for the damages. And then, there is the loss of privacy. Smart meters intrude upon your privacy and track everything you do inside your home. Consumer profiling concerns include "It said the "granularity" of the data that may be collected about consumers through smart metering "raises concerns with regard to security, the rights to privacy and the protection of personal data." The data could inform when homes are unoccupied, and reveal "patterns" about consumers' lives which could potentially be "tracked." (http://www.out-law.com/en/articles/2012/june/consumers-should-have-control-over-all-but-the-most-basic-smart-meter-data-processing-purposes-privacy-watchdog-says/).
If you want to lose your health, your property, and your privacy, then go ahead and use "smart" meters. If not, fight them with all you've got. That is what we are doing in California. An all-out ban and criminalizing their installation is what is needed, never mind opt-outs. Take it from one who lived with the rotten devices for two years, it was horrendous and I will never be the same. www.electrosmogprevention.org
well that's mostly bollocks!
only sweden accepts that humans are electrosensitive and that's only 3% of the swedish population, the noceba effect is much more likely in california (like placebo but it's where you believe what drivel you read on the internet and persuade yourself that you're ill, randomised double-blind trials with low level rf devices versus empty boxes show zero discernable effects)
er...Ok I agree with you about the pervasive tracking and you haven't mentioned that the derided smartmeters will allow anyone to be cut-off or market-forced into a lower consumption as our infrastructure gamed by happy groups such as ENRON finally falls on its face!
I have a theory about this.
In fact, the problem is likely that a mutated bacteria is the cause, as the DNA resonates at certain radio frequencies in the low microwave range, turning on genes and leading to the production of endotoxins as the bacteria responds as if another more toxic species is present.
It could possibly be living anywhere, probably in the sinuses or gut but the end result is the same.
Would explain how some people seem to suddenly "catch" EHS out of nowhere and it persists for years with a vague mix of symptoms suggestive of a toxin response.
Easy enough to test, culture suspect bacteria and see which endotoxins if any are generated when exposed to specific radio frequencies.
Big utility companies like *big* gobs of generating capacity (which takes big gobs of cash).
The choice of solution is not simple, it's *simplistic* to the point of stupidity.
Govt (who mandated smart meters in the UK due to a nice little earner being passed to a peer in the Lords IIRC) because they know the "market" has not solved the problem (and they can't seem to alter the regulations to *make* it solve the problem, which is sort of the point of being able to change the regs in the first place).
There *might* be ways around this. To square this particular circle you need a) better renewables (IE more *predictable* sources) which can be rolled out in *small* units that smaller groups can (just about) afford. I'm thinking groups of 10-20 houses b) a legal and financial framework that will support *lots* of smaller generators (which *supposedly* the UK now has).
I'm thinking micro hydro, anaerobic digestion and low temp geothermal. None are cheap (at the moment) but all should be eligible for feed in tariff support and when up and running *all* are likely to be more *secure* when up and running than *any* wind or solar system. I'd guess the order would be low temp geothermal(single borehole house heating systems with down hole heat exchangers have been running since the 1930's in parts of the US mid West)/anaerobic digestion (human bowels are fairly predictable) and micro hydro (could freeze or hit low head in a drought) in terms of ongoing monitoring and attention.
I'm fond of geothermal as the studies at Reading U in the 70s suggests a single borehole would be good for 500-1000 Kw. until the radioactive decay heat wore out (it's only good for a few million years) but you're looking at a 2Km hole in a built up area as opposed to the original 900m North Sea boreholes.
What's actually needed is (in IT terms) a systems integrator to drill hole (or water wheels or digestor) /source & supply hardware/set up deal with electricity market. Engineering a drilling rig the size of one of those mini excavators (that can get through a doorway) is likely to be non trivial.
The downside. Someone in the group gets an extra shed in their garden, and there will be ongoing replacement costs every 20-30 years shared between all homeowners (economies of scale should make them fall in *real* terms over that time).
The upside. 50-100Kw of electricity 24/7/ to use or sell for (roughly) the next 10 000 centuries.
No grid connection -> no excuse to need a meter.
The question is does anyone have the combination of cash, skills and vision to form such a company in the UK?
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