There should be a law...
Anyone called a "thought leader", or still worse "thinkfluencer" should only allowed to perform at secretive celebrity events in the hope that their collective egos eventually reach critical mass.
Remember Nest Labs? Google spunked $2bn (£1.41bn) on the home appliance outfit two years ago. The acquisition was supposed to put Google-owner Alphabet at the heart of the "internet of things," and in the consumer mainstream. Nest cofounder Tony Fadell had been the design force behind the iPod as a contractor. Google mostly …
"HooliXYZ is Hooli’s experimental division. The dream kitchen. The moonshot factory. The laboratory of possibility. The midwife of magic. The womb of wonders.
"This group is led by beloved and universally distinguished Sole Head Dreamer Nelson “Big Head” Bighetti, who was co-founder, principal innovator and chief visionary of Pied Piper. He is just three credits shy of an undergraduate degree in computer science from the University of Oklahoma. He owns a boat."
Reality has a horrible ability to bite Silicon Valley in the behind.
UK housing stock, as an example, does not lend itself easily to be Nest controlled, what with old boilers, poor circulation and so on. A quick gander of the forums will suggest as much.
I wager that each geography/country has other idiosyncrasies, making Nest a typical 'valley bubble attempt at best.
For a more useful UK idea, look up Positive Input Ventilation (PIV). Cheap, cheerful, and based on engineering.
"UK housing stock, as an example, does not lend itself easily to be Nest controlled"
I looked into Nest recently as there was an offer on Amazon UK for a Nest controller. I found my heating system isn't compatible because the thermostat uses a 240V control circuit rather than a low voltage (24V) one. A colleague's commented that he'd looked at Nest but his heating system wasn't compatible for the same reason.
Not sure what the percentage of 240V systems is in the UK, but mainstream UK manufacturers like Drayton seem to sell a lot of 240V gear, possibly it's cheaper and simpler to install.
Newer boilers seem to support a 12V control line. Mine that is now 6 years old does.
Sending 240V to a controller is kind of crazy but convenient and I learned the painful way the first time I upgraded the thermostat in my current house with the old boiler
The Nest thermostat supports completely wireless with USB power or repurposing the disconnected 240V cable to provide 12V and power to the thermostat in which case you do not need the USB power supply. The boiler control/switching unit supplies the 12V from dedicated terminals
I have had a Nest thermostat for a few years now and it does seem to have reduced my gas usage. If only the cost had gone down too!
Mine's 24 volt signalling, latest controllers 2015, with all the bells and whistles and extra valves the spec permitted. No one in the UK understands how it ought to work, and I've soldered a nice big relay in the 240-volt valve side to get it to do what I want (which it does, now). Try interfacing intelligently with that!
Until recently the Nest didn't even support OpenTherm, meaning you could only really use it effectively for those old types of boilers/heaters and not modern energy efficient ones everyone has bought in recent years. Without OpenTherm the thermostat can't do any modulation and so it's reduced to a very expensive on/off switch.
Furthermore, considering it's high price and the relative small (or non existent savings on a modern device) savings it would take years to make you money back compared to a basic 20 quid thermostat. It's a gimmick, nothing more...
OpenTherm boilers aren't that common in the UK... yet. It's a pretty big thing in the Netherlands, apparently.
Most UK boilers are switched live, so they are indeed turned either on or off by the controller. But if the controller has some smarts it can figure out pretty well how to take account of learned hysteresis and prevailing weather conditions (it knows the outside temperature). I really have no complaints about the Nest Thermostat that I fitted a couple of months ago in my house. The wife loves it because she can dial up the temperature when she's coming home early on the train. I love it because I can annoy her by bringing the room down to a sensible temperature ahead of my return from the pub!
Well you're right about things being different in different regions. Here in Phoenix Arizona all we care about is cooling (air conditioning) and not heating. For heating most homes use a heat pump (a/c run in reverse) or for those who have gas in their neighborhood, then a gas furnace. And that gets turned on maybe 3 months out of the year.
To be fare, you are confusing the company Nest with the product Nest. I agree though, I have a new built home here in Colorado, it's a single level, the builder installed a Nest thermostat by default.
Even with a modern heating/cooling system a NEST thermostat is pretty clumsy to use unless you think you can survive on a single min/max temperature for 16-hours awake, 8-hours asleep. In my house the away feature is pretty useless unless I'm actually out of the house... and then my phone reports I'm away to the NEST Web which tells the Nest..
Which of course is useless if my partner is sat in the office at home working... IoF - Internet of fskups.
One of the functions I used to have was the ability to change the programing on the thermostat from my desktop. The latest software upgrade breaks this. Not directly of course, or they would fix that. It is the new EULA that is the problem. I have to accept using cookies and I have to accept that they " might not be able to honor a do not track request". If I do not accept the terms I can not use the software anymore. I haven't followed changes in the law, if there have been any, but it used to be public utility records were all public records. That meant any one could see my bills. I wonder if this means that anyone could request my browsing history because it is part of the correspondence with my nest thermostat and my city utility.
I am looking for a new thermostat.
"the ability to change the programing on the thermostat from my desktop".
Why? Unless you're confined to a wheel-chair. Too lazy to go change it yourself?
If you're at work and the house is empty, then you should have set the termostat to an appropriate temperature or timed to come on just before you're due home.
I've yet to see a convincing argument for IoT controls of your heating or anything else - if you want a good example just look at the British Gas "Hive" adverts - "control your heating from the beach" - you should have turned it off before you went on holiday you dozey get!!
The only good reason for an IoT controlled house would be for the seriously disabled. The ability to control everything from one place would be a god-send. For everyone else, just a gimick for the lazy.
"The only good reason for an IoT controlled house would be for the seriously disabled."
I was away from home for a couple of months last Winter, and it was reassuring to be able to check the house temperature and turn on the heating during cold snaps. However all that took was a Raspberry Pi, some Dallas temperature sensors and a couple of relays.
I have a Nest and it works fine with my boiler. Later versions do hot water too for UK general setups - mine doesn't. Here's what I like:
- Looks nice - compared with the old-style plastic thermostats unchanged for 30 years. If nothing else, Nest have shot a bolt up the arse of every lazy company making thermostats and smoke alarms. Good - I enjoy seeing companies that rest on their laurels being giving a surprise kicking.
- When the house is empty, the heating is adjusted accordingly - but not so cold the pipes freeze.
- I can put the heating on from my phone if I know I'm going to be home early - sometimes happens.
- My heating bills have gone down: hard to put a hard and fast monetary value on this, but I'd say 5-8%.
I just think it a shame that Apple didn't buy Nest when it had the chance - although to be fair, Google haven't yet interfered too much.
If you are going to be out of your house for months, shut off your water, turn on (and leave open) the lowest tap you have in your house to drain the pipes, and drain your water heater. Then you don't need worry about pipes freezing so you can keep your house at the lowest setting your thermostat allows, if you want.
If it is really cold when you return, turn your heat on then leave and: go to the nearest bar for a couple beers / visit a friend / see a movie / go somewhere for a nice meal / go buy some groceries since if you left anything in your fridge it has spoiled / anything else that might kill an hour or two, then go home to your warm house and turn your water back on. An internet connected thermostat is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist.
I hate the idea of cloud connected control mechanisms - be it central heating or home security.
I could be home from work at any time between 5 and 9pm. What time do I set for my central heating to be "on". This situation lends itself quite well to being able to set my central heating state remotely, ideally using my VPN connection to home and connecting to my central heating control directly.
use the little * setting on your thermostat. it will stop your pipes from freezing. my thermo is 20 years old i should think and even it has the "dont allow pipes to freeze option" . i dont need to set that from my phone whilst in brazil. i can do it....GASP....before i leave the fucking house.
zoning is the best way to save money on heating. most houses are 1 zone with one thermostat. so if its cold in your thermostats position, its cold all over the house. so it heats the whole house....you might have a guest bedroom that you never use except occasionally, that gets hot when ever the corridor next to the thermostat is cold. you might not want your living room heated at midnight, but you want your bedroom nice and cozy.
even trv's are an improvemt on this IoT shit. this gives you manual zoning. honeywell do some kit that does it over wifi and an app, but its not cheap. i may use these in my next house, or i might just stick with trv's.
and lets not get into the potential security issues of having your boiler potentially accessible to the whole world.
more shiny shit for idiots.
"Fadell is a close friend of Alphabet CEO Larry Page, and was diverted to rescue Google's creepy wearable Glass. He's also rechanneled to be a performing "thinkfluencer" at the secretive celebrity events Google likes to host."
A performing thinkfluencer - is that really a proper job for a grown up?
Also, what outfit is he wearing for his performance, on a scale from, say, ABBA to Die Form?
"A performing thinkfluencer - is that really a proper job for a grown up?"
Excellent point. I wouldn't settle below "Chief Envisioneer" myself. So much more distinguished...
"Also, what outfit is he wearing for his performance, on a scale from, say, ABBA to Die Form?"
Blasphemy! What kind of question is this?!? Turtle-neck, obviously. Any colour, as long as it's black.
Microsoft certainly used to have the strategy of letting the market chose a winner then buying the company.
With much the same results - the innovators who worked long hours to push a personal vision didn't fit well into corporate mega-culture and moved on.
The products then tended to stagnate and slowly die.
Perhaps someone could look back into history with a search engine and see how it all turned out?
The idea that a busy household can be run by these devices seems very flakey to me. Heating demand in a house with a lot of coming and going is hard to predict, for example, and easy enough to switch on and off at will. A lot of it seems predicated on the idea that costs are not a primary driver, yet putting the choices in the hands of an algorithm could lead to arbitrary increases in your bills if it gets it wrong. That Amazon thing that orders shit for you is similar - if you are rich and don't care about a few bucks on the price, it's nice enough, but most people can't afford to become disempowered cost centres in Amazon's accounting system.
And then the spy stuff. Bad enough our phones are sophisticated angle-tags, we want our houses seeded with this stuff? Meh. Any non-electronics with an rfid is going in the microwave, and anything that needs an internet connection to function is going to have to be a LOT better than the nearest non-connected alternative. There's going to be a nice market for physical adblockers like Adtrap (or Pi-Hole for homebrewers) to filter the crap out.
The Nest maybe overkill, but modern thermo-control systems definitely do save money. I'm thinking of the ones where you tell it at what time in the morning you want your house to be at X degrees, and it then achieves it in the mots economical way.
It's badly designed HW. Ought to be isolated contacts for 5VDC to 240V AC.
It's badly designed SW. Not just the privacy and Security.
It's from WRONG company.
IoT is garbage hype. There has been better SW & HW to control your heating & do other stuff maybe 30 years ... even for ordinary homes. The issue is always unless good at DIY, retro-fitting is expensive labour.
Labour or lack of DIY skill is why useless, insecure "wireless" burglar alarms and cameras are sold instead of cheaper and secure wired ones.
>Labour or lack of DIY skill is why useless, insecure "wireless" burglar alarms and cameras are sold instead of cheaper and secure wired ones.
I'm more inclined to blame house builders - it would cost next to faff-all to run some CAT5 cable - or just general purpose conduits - between rooms in a house before the plasterboard is put up, yet I have yet to see it in a new build.
I've seen the interiors of several houses that were built after domestic broadband became the norm, yet none have such built-in cabling or conduits.
They don't even need mains from the same source, they are RF Spectrum polluting illegal radio transmitters that only achieve CE mark by misleading not-real-world testing.
The newer faster models still can't compete with 1Gbps on swtich with Cat5e for speed and interfere even with VHF.
no one is saying they can compete with a dedicated cable, especially not me. but you can get many hundreds of megabits across them. (i cant be bothered to test point to point but mine give 158mb/s which is the max for my internet connection, which is all i care about)
as for rf interference, yes, you have a point, but no one gives a shit, least of all me.
yes, the bane of radio hams. like i said, no one cares except them. and i dont care about them. tell therm to get a mobile phone for fucks sake.
"but I'd bet that an outside outlet or light fixture would offer an easy point of entry for someone with evil intent." - only if they were very thin.
Well great. Any study of control systems would tell you that the simple on/off isn't the most efficient, or even best at maintaining a constant temperature. The only plus to such a system is that it is simple, and simple to understand.
Sorry, I thought that this was an IT site.
"rechanneled to be a performing "thinkfluencer"" - I love it, perhaps they'll beginualise their imagineering then, and come up with products that cannot be used outside of a US$5,000,000 house, that eventually will form a company worth $50Bn and end up being closed down after it's sold to Microsoft.
Firstly, I was given it, I don't think I'd ever have bought it.
1)Multiple temperature setting events per day.
For instance 05:50: 20 degrees, 07:00, 9 degrees, etc. I've not found a limit on the number yet.
2) Looks nice
3) Interesting to see when the heating was on for the last 10 days
4) Ability to turn on remotely when I know the kids are in (but upstairs) and its turned off. However this wouldn't be needed without Dislike (7).
1) Learning facility is useless.
2) Remote control is a useless gimmick. Never used beyond the first few weeks.
3) Software errors cause unexpected heating schedules
4) Software updates cause unexpected heating schedules.
5) "True radiant" (where it turns on and off early) is useless.
6) Annoying that I cant see when the heating was on since I installed it.
7) Auto away that turns heating off when people are in the house but not passing the thermostat.
8) Price (Although mine was free).
The Gen1 detector decide to go crazy and started firing at random times, usually around 3AM. The other non-Nest detector I have never peeped even once. When the other detector did go off (frying bacon or something and forgot the vent) the Nest didn't do a thing. That seemed to be the magic word – when customer support heard that they promptly offered to ship a replacement. Thankfully the Gen2 version hasn't decided to go off in the wee hours, so far.
As a failed experiment I'm not going to plunk down even bigger bucks for the thermostat. I bought a considerably more affordable "wifi" unit, using a rebate from my gas co., that made it nearly free; it's perfectly adequate. Maybe in ten years when this one dies, and/or I can get another rebate, and/or Nest prices come down in line with the competition.
I lived in a 3 storey house with wired connected detectors but they kep failing and couldn't be silenced when her indoors burnt the toast. So I moved to Nest Protects and found the ability to silence them useful but more so the fact it calls out the location of the fire from the other alarms. In addition there has been more than one occasion when the app push notification has told me about an alarm, still normally the missus burning food but handy. Finally loss of power events or spurious alarms are no longer annoying chirps that tell me nothing but are easily understood error statements in the app.
I live in a very inexpensive part of the country now and have moved to a much larger house and find having the widely spaced but communicating alarms helpful so instead of dashing around the house looking for the connected alarm that's going off I can go straight to the problem.
i mean really? how often does that actually happen?
youve got 3 alarms, and you cant tell which one is going off by, err, listening to the direction its coming from?
to silence a smoke alarm, you just press the button on it and open a window. wrap a towel around it or pull the battery if its really bad
i think our fire alarm has gone off by mistake 3 times in the last 10 years.
if it works for you then great.
haha! ive just checked the price of them - £80 each! you are fucking joking!
i'll leave them for you to enjoy.
In multistorey or large houses you need connected alarms as if there is background noise you may not hear the alarm. Connected alarms all go off simultaneously so knowing which one is triggering the alarm is not the trivial act you might think. Not all alarms have disable buttons. Our recent houses have had 2.7m ceilings I can testify that getting an alrm off the ceiling whilst it blasts you in the face with 95dB is not easy or pleasant. Nest have solved all of these problems very neatly, my connected alarms tell me audibly and by app which alarm is going off and if it is smoke, CO or fire. I can silence them whilst they still monitor by app and audible voice by pushing a button using a a broom or similar.
And £240 pound for 7 years piece of mind? I can pony up £35 a year for that.
I'm like Google: let the market decide
Before i make permanent changes to my home by drilling holes and wiring stuff into a boiler I want to see how a company has done in 5 or so years. If it's still booming then maybe I'll have a look at it.
If I'm using an app that hasn't been updated in months with no new market traction or product sales and I'm faced with a bit of tech wired into my boiler that relies on the server-equivalent of one of the contact-us inserts you find in a spectrum cassette sleeve then maybe not.
My current setup might not be as "smart" as I'd like, but my dumb boiler heats the shower no matter what happens in california*
*imagine reading that sentence in the 80s
I have a Nest thermometer, 2 nest protect smoke alarms and two Nest Cams (with subscriptions). I'm reasonably happy with them and while the ability for the app to sense my location or direction being in the direction of home and then start preheating for my arrival is quite nice, it's not exactly a killer feature. The cameras were incredibly buggy, stopping working several times daily but have recently become far more reliable due to updates but alert me to motion whenever the light changes in the room (30 alerts today so far), expensive and cost a bomb in subscription costs. The smoke alarms seem...good, but I don't plan to properly test them anytime soon by burning down the house.
However, I too have recently started to think that Nest is adrift and trying to go with their own standards like they still have first mover advantage, rather than open ones or even popular modern ones (HOMEKIT!!!) where they are unable to support Apple's standard due to being owned by Alphabet. In particular without Homekit support, and the Siri integration that would bring or massive new investment by Alphabet in shiny, new and interesting Nest products or initiatives, I can't really see much future for it.
Nest purchasers are naturally Apple purchasers because both like Shiny and spend loads on tech, so the wisdom of not integrating the product with Apple's protocol seems very short sighted as most stuff coming out now is Homekit enabled. In retrospect, I wish I'd waited instead of buying the Nest ecosystem as it hasn't kept innovating and the Works with Nest strategy has fallen by the wayside.
"Nest purchasers are naturally Apple purchasers because both like Shiny and spend loads on tech, "
Nest purchasers are naturally Apple purchasers because both like Shiny and spend loads on overpriced, marketing driven substandard crap. and you can add sonos to that list too...
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