Photo credit Unhindered by Talent
And here is this week’s Green numbers:
I was peripherally aware of Augmented Reality before attending the Mobile 2.0 conference in Barcelona a few weeks back but hadn’t really thought through its consequences/possibilities until I saw the video above by Dutch startup company Layar.
I realised that Layar’s offering was geographically limited but its potential (esp in the Green space) was enormous – how to tap it?
I mentioned Layar during a briefing with Krishna Kumar of SpaceTimeInsight a couple of weeks back in San Francisco and he immediately ‘got it’ and was very excited with the possibilities.
Then yesterday Layar co-founder Maarten Lens-Fitzgerald pinged me via Twitter to let me know that Layar has opened up its Augmented Reality platform and is giving out (a, for now, limited number of) API keys.
This means that any database with location data and a Layar api key now has the ability to create an Augmented Reality Layar! just stop and think about that for a sec.
This opens up enormous possibilities for Augmented Reality applications in the Green space. Imagine walking down the street and seeing emissions data for the companies/businesses simply by pointing your phone at them. Or pointing at machinery and seeing schematics, lifecycle emissions data, or…
A mashup of AMEE, the neutral aggregation platform which measures “the carbon footprint of everything on Earth”, with Layar would be an absolutely awesome. Or a wiki with a Green Layar UI. Or….
The possibilities are limitless!
I really wish I were a software developer right now – the applications of this technology are seriously awe inspiring!
[Disclosure] – AMEE are a GreenMonk client co.
I just received news that AMEE has landed funding. We have mentioned AMEE already a ton of times on GreenMonk, but that is because they share our open-source philosophy and they are Green. In fact, AMEE CEO Gavin Starks is the one who came up with the MegaTom concept!
From the press release:
AMEE, the World’s Energy Meter, has secured substantial Series A financing from leading VC funds in the USA and UK.
AMEE is a web-based service (API) that combines measurement, calculation, profiling and transactional systems, representing emissions data from 150 countries and regions. As a neutral data aggregation platform, AMEE’s vision is to enable the measurement of the “Carbon Footprint” of everything on Earth. AMEE aims to assist with the development of energy and carbon as a global currency, assisting governments and companies that need to account for and trade internationally in CO2 emissions.
The collaboration between O’Reilly Alphatech Ventures (OATV), Union Square Ventures (USV) and The Accelerator Group (TAG) will enable AMEE to expand its reach by enhancing its data, and extend globally.
The AMEE platform is already used internationally by many organisations including; UK Government (Defra/DECC), Morgan Stanley, Google, Radiohead, Nesta, the Irish Government, the Welsh Assembly, the Energy Saving Trust, BRE, Sun Microsystems, plus numerous other IT, business services and software companies.
Gavin Starks, Founder and CEO of AMEE commented, “AMEE’s growth over the past 12 months has been quite remarkable. We are delighted to have the financial and strategic support of such experienced investors to take our business forward.
AMEE’s is driving change by increasing the accuracy and transparency of emissions and consumption in a manner that has not been achieved by any legislation, market or service to date. We have developed and demonstrated a forward-thinking and innovative business model. It is based around neutrality, scale and collaboration. This reflects the dramatic changes that will impact our societies, their financial and social systems in the years to come.
The execution of the Climate Change Act in the UK last week, combined with President Elect Obama’s forward-looking Federal Cap & Trade statements are indicators of the scale of change approaching us.”
Bryony Worthington, Head of International Policy at AMEE added, “As one of the authors of the UK Climate Change Act, I am delighted to be bringing dedicated solutions to industry and consumers. The time to act is now.”
Mark P. Jacobsen, Managing Director of O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures (“OATV”), commented: “AMEE’s vision to aggregate all of the energy data in the world fits OATV’s mission to invest in stuff that matters. With the recent sea change in America’s political climate, we look forward to AMEE bringing its platform-based data service to clients in the States.”
Ablert Wenger, Partner at Union Square Ventures, commented, “We believe that emissions information is critical to better decision making by individuals and companies. We are excited that AMEE’s service helps to substantially improve the timeliness and accuracy of emissions measurement.”
At the recent [email protected] Green IT conference Gavin Starks of AMEE had an idea which he and Simon Wardley co-pitched to the audience, to change the carbon footprint metric from tonnes of CO2 to people!
The idea, as outlined in the video above was so well received that we decided to create a site to promote it and encourage anyone who also thinks it is a good idea to become involved. The site is at megatom.ning.com.
From the MegaTom about page:
The average European creates 10 tonnes of CO2 per annum.
The average American, 20 tonnes.
To avert the dangers of Climate Change, we need to drop our CO2 production to 1 tonne per person.
Problem: What is 1 tonne of CO2? How do you visualise it?
Answer: You don’t! You change the metric. 1 tonne = 1 person’s annual CO2 production.
1 average person. 1 Tom.
Because it’s not about saving tonnes, it’s about saving everyone.
For example, a 15 minute shower is 0.1% of a Tom, driving 100 miles in a standard car is 4% of a Tom and producing 1 laptop computer is 45% of a Tom.
How many Toms have you consumed? Don’t waste your Toms.
Save Toms, not tonnes!
If you agree that we should be saving Tom’s, not tonnes, why not go to the MegaTom, join and please leave any feedback/suggestions. Thanks.
Gavin Starks, founder and CEO of AMEE, is one of the speaker’s presenting at this year’s [email protected] Green IT conference on November 26th. GreenMonk are a sponsor of the conference, hence our interviewing the speakers in the run-up to the conference.
We have written about AMEE several times before on GreenMonk because we are strong believers in their philosophies.
From the AMEE website:
AMEE is a neutral aggregation platform to measure and track all the energy data on Earth. This includes aggregating every emission factor and methodology related to CO2 and Energy Assessments (individuals, businesses, buildings, products, supply chains, countries, etc.), and all the consumption data (fuel, water, waste, quantitative and qualitative factors)
Because AMEE provides standardised access to emissions factors and methodologies you have to think they are a natural partner for many companies/organisations and indeed they currently count the UK govt, the Irish govt, Google, Radiohead and Morgan Stanley among their users!
AMEE keeps global factors and methodologies updated and maintained as a managed service, saving its clients time and resources, so there is logic for SAP to use AMEE for this service, for example.
Since AMEE also enables its clients to add their own methods, AMEE’s API approach is a valuable consolidation platform.
Collaboration could help stimulate new markets that cross-over between smart-grids, business footprinting, consumer initiatives, and policy trends. AMEE could support and compliment the aims of the Lighthouse Council, by extending the reach and demonstrating best practice.
This would enable (controlled) data mining and benchmarking in a collaborative environment, whilst maintaining privacy.
A collaboration between SAP and AMEE could demonstrate thought-leadership and generate new data marketplaces. It would also present a tangible way to accelerate reductions and efficiencies through data portability and by increasing transparency in the system.
The output could inform corporate strategy and government policy. This may be particularly timely and relevant to the new US administration.
Photo Credit ralphbijker
I have been having some very interesting conversations with people in the carbon software sector these last couple of weeks.
The first was with Michael Meehan of Carbonetworks (which I blogged about here) and we discussed their offering which is a “carbon strategy platform”. From my blog post about Carbonetworks:
The app at its most basic helps companies understand what their carbon footprint is, and then helps the companies translate that into a financial bottom line. The app helps companies see what options they have to reduce their carbon footprint and helps them create a carbon strategy from a managerial perspective on how to proceed in the carbon market.
Then I talked to Stefan Guertzgen, Marketing Director for Chemicals and Franz Hero, vp, chemical industry business unit both at SAP. They were talking about the SAP Environmental Compliance application which, in their words:
enables companies to gather information on the use of energy, in all its forms, throughout the enterprise, identify areas for energy reduction, monitor the implementation of energy excellence projects, and make the results available throughout the enterprise
Earlier this week I was talking to Kevin Leahy, who is a director in IBM’s IT Optimization Business Unit about IBM’s House of Carbon for which they have also developed carbon reporting software for their client base.
measuring the Energy Consumption of everything… aggregates “official” energy metrics, conversion factors and CO2 data from over 150 countries… is a common platform for profiling and transactions (there’s a transaction engine at the core of AMEE)
Noticing a common thread here? Guys, stop re-inventing the wheel.
IBM and SAP (and anyone else thinking of embarking on carbon software) STOP NOW! It has already been done and done well by companies with open api’s (and open data in AMEE’s case).
Get on the phone to Carbonetworks and AMEE, and instead of building another carbon app, use their already comprehensive infrastructures and api’s to get a jump-start and bring best-of-breed carbon software to market efficiently!