WattDepot logging

This is the final blog post of the summer, as the Fall semester starts today. Didn’t get to spend as much time on implementation last week as I had planned. I now have unit tests for the authenticated placeholder User resources, and refactored the client to support accessing resources that require authentication. I’ve also adopted the HackystatLogger code (unable to use as library due to hard coded Hackystat-specific paths) so that I can do logging properly, so I fixed my code that was logging to System.out to use a logger.

The other task from last week was researching whole home electricity meters. The situation has improved from last December, and the TED 5000 appears to meet all of WattDepot’s needs. In particular, it now has a Gateway component that records data from the measurement component and makes it available over TCP/IP via an XML API. For $240, including a wireless handheld display, it looks like a really good deal. You can check out the web interface on a live demo unit they have set up. BrulTech makes a meter that looks like the only other real option, but it lacks the Gateway component, so you have to provide your own device to monitor the data and distribute it via TCP/IP.

Plans from last week:

  • Get logging working in WattDepot
    • done
  • Implement UserManager for concurrency control
    • not done, after discussion with Philip we’re thinking we should push this down into the DB layer
  • Implement memory storage of data
    • not done
  • Work on User resource
    • not done
  • Look for home meter solutions that could work with WattDepot
    • done

Other accomplishments from last week:

  • Provided feedback to Pavel on his dissertation proposal defense. He passed! Congrats!
  • Got tests working for authenticated resources, tracked down JUnit problem with Philip’s assistance (needed fork=yes)
  • Found and fixed a couple of minor problems in the hackystat-developer-example Ant build scripts

Pointers to work products:

Plans for this week:

  • Write DB abstraction layer
  • Implement simple memory storage of data
  • Work on User resource
  • Attend first REIS seminar this Thursday 4:30-5:30 PM

Cool links:

2 thoughts on “WattDepot logging

  1. Geoff

    Brultech does have a gateway device, you can use their EtherBee (Zigbee->TCP/IP) or EtherPort (RS232->TCP/IP) gateways…
    I have one and it works great as well as being able to support 7 different channels of monitoring (it also supports net monitoring for solar & other power generation).
    After looking at both, although it lacks the polish & commercialization of the Ted, the Brultech ECM1240 has far more abilities.
    I have already created a program that publishes the data to Wattzon, Pachube and Twitter…
    Just in case you are wondering, I do not work for Brultech, just like their product…

    1. Robert Brewer Post author

      Thanks for the feedback Geoff. I read over the Brultech site, and a variety of forum sites where people were discussing their use of the Brultech meter and getting data off of it. My understanding is that in all cases, you have to provide a computer to get the live data stream from the meter. If you already have a computer in the home that you leave on 24×7, this might not be a problem, but many people don’t. Also, if you are trying to reduce power consumption in the home, leaving a computer on around the clock to record data seems counterproductive. One can buy or build an embedded computer with low power consumption to record the data, but that’s what the TED 5000 provides out of the box.

      It should be even easier to get data out of the TED 5000 to send to other sources (WattzOn, Pachube, etc) since the Gateway component records the data and makes it available via XML. In fact, that’s my primary motivation for acquiring the TED 5000. The web dashboard that it provides out of the box is also very impressive, and the hand-held wireless display should make it easier to measure the consumption of individual appliances.

      Of course I haven’t actually used either device, so my assessment is based on web-accessible information only.

      Do you have a link for your code to publish data from the Brultech meter?


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