The Greener Gadgets Conference, held in New York City last week, was a great forum for the types of innovations that we hope to see more of in the coming year. Organized by Inhabitat, a website that focuses on design innovations that enhance sustainability, efficiency, and interactivity in the home, the conference featured inventions that marry form and function while keeping the planet in mind.
This year’s winner was the Tweet-a-watt, an energy monitor that publicizes your energy use via your Twitter account. Using this invention, you can monitor your own energy use without having to decipher your home’s energy meter (especially good if you rent).
Microblogging your energy use makes it easier to see how much you consume compared to others. Photo Courtesy Inhabitat.
In this age of accountability, an even more interesting aspect of the Twee-a-watt your energy use becomes public knowledge, carrying with it the potential for public admiration (or scorn—but we hope that’s not the case). The Tweet-a-watt was created by MIT graduate Limor of ladyada.net, but you don’t have to be a genius to make one at home; Limor even provides instructions and diagrams on her site to help you along.
While the Tweet-a-watt was the winner of the competition, many other designs are worth mentioning. Second place went to the Power Hog, a piggy bank-inspired energy-monitoring system that teaches kids about energy conservation. Just plug the pig’s tail into a wall outlet, then drop in coins to meter out a certain amount of time and energy usage.
The Indoor Drying Rack, made up of bamboo laminate and recycled aluminum, took third place. It requires no energy to dry clothes, is easy to install and takes up no floor space.
Fourth place went to The Laundry POD, a portable, hand-operated laundry machine with mechanics similar to those of a salad spinner, saving money, water and gas.
But these are just the beginning. Check out the top 50 entries and be wowed 46 more times.