I spent the day sitting at the feet of some consistently bright and generally young things at the leading edge of smart grid research, at the Dublin Electricity Research Centre’s research symposium ‘Shaping the Grid’. It was a great event, and the ERC chaps are doing great work. But something was wrong.
Tuesday, 22 May 2012
Thursday, 17 May 2012
Most commercial IT applications execute in places connected by optical fibre, and so a sufficiency of data communication capacity and reliability can usually be assumed. For that reason, the location of information or of processing seems not to matter any more: it may as well be in the clouds. Cloud computing, where users give up on knowing where their software is executing, is both very fashionable and mildly successful.
Wednesday, 9 May 2012
Today, energy storage seems valuable, costly and challenging. In comparison, the value, cost and challenges of the associated data may seem negligible. A similar view informed the development of telecoms networks in the 1980s: connectivity was valuable, costly and challenging, and the network operators took little interest in the information carried. Then as connectivity prices came down, the telcos discovered, too late, that the sustained value was in the information; the tweets, the postings and the Google adverts.