Cloud feedback serves many masters

Once data about a process is collected and analyzed, the process can be improved. Most of the time, it’s improved in more than one way at once. Cloud feedback applications nearly always have multiple paybacks.

  • Transportation:  safety, maintenance, and fuel efficiency
  • Buildings:   security, comfort, and energy efficiency
  • Water:   water purity, safety from property damage, and water efficiency
  • Smart grid:   reliability, reduced labor, and energy efficiency
  • Power generation:   maintenance, billing, and public relations

The fact that feedback data is stored in the cloud enables additional uses, by allowing multiple organizations to use the data.  For example, flood control sensors provide data both to water managers, to tell them when to remove obstacles in the water, and to the public, to provide guidance during a flood emergency. Similarly, the sensors in a smart electric meter enable the property owner to cut energy losses, while saving the utility the cost of manual meter-reading. Most often, cloud feedback systems are designed to serve multiple masters.

One of these ‘masters’ is usually efficiency. When a machine is more closely monitored, there is usually an opportunity to cut its energy use.  Sometimes, water or other raw materials can be saved as well. Consequently many cloud feedback applications promote more efficient or sustainable resource use. Efficiency is not a very “sexy” attribute for making sales, however, so other benefits like safety, comfort, or reliability lead the sales pitch.

March 2, 2010 · knovak · No Comments
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