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Comment Re:Nothing new - PG&E was doing this 33 years (Score 1) 155

Reducing peak loads isn't at all the same as using less power.

This is also about reducing aggregate peak demand which is different than just reducing your home's peak demand. It's quite possible for non-cooperative homes to all individually reduce peak demand while in the aggregate increasing peak demand.

Comment Re:'Citizen fuelled' != 'saving energy' (Score 1) 155

Reducing peak demand doesn't mean using less electricity and reducing peak demand by 50MW can in fact eliminate the need for 50MW of generating capacity.

If you have a cafeteria that seats 100 and there are 200 employees who want to eat their lunch for 30 minutes at the cafeteria simply have half go at 11:45 and half at 12:15. It really isn't that big of a deal and it does save the cost of building a bigger cafeteria. If it makes you angry to eat at 11:45 instead of 12:15 then simply get someone to swap with you. I'm not sure you'll notice if your A/C runs from 11:45 to 12:15 instead of 12:15 to 12:45 but if the thought bothers you too much maybe they can have the system change the clocks in your house as well so you think it is running from 12:15 to 12:45 so you can be content.

Comment Re:logical fallacy (Score 1) 155

I'd say that reducing peak demand is less expensive than building a solar power plant just as replacing an 80W light bulb with a 6W light bulb is cheaper than adding 74W of capacity to a power plant.

It really is just math, nothing to do with hipsters or eco logic.

I'm sure your hyperbolic "drastically change how they live" assertions can be safely ignored as untrue.

Comment Re:They actually want to kick appliances off. (Score 1) 155

All the load controllers I'm familiar prevent short cycling your A/C unit.

I'm sure the units you used in the 90's were stupid, it's now 20+ years later and $5 microcontrollers are quite smart.

If you believe you won't be comfortable because your A/C turns on 10 minutes later than it would have turned on if your existing dumb thermostat was installed then you are mistaken. But I'm all in favor of letting you continue to have your dumb thermostat turn your A/C on and off whenever you want and for your to pay 4X as much for your power as me. No skin off my nose.

Personally I prefer saving a few hundred dollars a month in electric bills while remaining just as comfortable.

Comment Re:They actually want to kick appliances off. (Score 1) 155

Pre-cooling a house absolutely does work because you aren't pre-cooling it "during the hottest part of the day", you are cooling it during the non-peak demand periods which are non-peak precisely because they are the cooler parts of the day/night. You specifically run your A/C less during the hottest times of the day.

You don't "lose your A/C during the hottest part of the day either", you completely misunderstand, you just try to use it less during the hottest part of the day.

A smart thermostat is able to pre-cool and then use the A/C just enough to keep the temperature rise down to the point that it doesn't exceed a desired max while using the A/C the least during peak periods.

Comment Re:They actually want to kick appliances off. (Score 1) 155

Smart thermostats just regulate your home's temperature without any ability to reduce peak demand. They can reduce your total consumption but not peak demand. Timers also don't reduce peak demand, unless you simply set them to not run during peak hours.

Imagine a city with 100,000 A/C units. They run an average of 25% of the time during peak use times. If more than 25% of them are on at one particular time then they increase peak demand. By understanding demand needs of all the homes an intelligent algorithm can give each home all the A/C cooling they need while minimizing peak demand.

You can still have your home at 76 degrees while home if that is what you want. Your individual need for more cooling soon is in the noise, but in the aggregate all those units cooperating can substantially reduce peak loads. Particularly when coupled with other high load appliances that also don't need to run at specific times, such as hot water heaters.

Comment Re:They actually want to kick appliances off. (Score 1) 155

It's real simple why you might want a load controller shutting off your A/C at times, the electric company is willing to sell you power for a substantial discount.

You don't have to be miserable, you just have to plan.

Pre-cool your house, don't run the electric dryer between noon and 9pm, ...

Tesla/SolarCity will likely eventually announce an integrated system that uses a battery pack plus load controller to minimize your peak demand and allow you to save substantially on your power bill.

Comment Re:Yes, Because Optical Media Is Durable (Score 1) 380

I'll let you know in 2116 how my backups are doing, oh wait, I won't care whether or not I can still restore my backup of my 2016 laptop.

I'm sure we'll do exactly what we've done in the past. Take our grandparents collection of photographs, slides and Super-8 movies and move them to new media. Maybe it was to floppies, then CDs, then DVDs, then flash drives, then cloud storage, but most people aren't looking for a single media that will last 100 years. The entirety of my grand-parent's large collection of photographs, slides and Super-8 movies all fits in a 2.5" USB drive after being digitized. I don't care if they didn't use archival photography paper that lasts 100 years, the cheap Osco Drug prints lasted long enough to make it to the next generation of media.

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