Author Topic: Now There Are "Smart Water Meters"  (Read 7698 times)

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Offline Optimus

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Now There Are "Smart Water Meters"
« on: October 07, 2010, 12:33:15 pm »
Sustainable & Arrested Development: Dubuque uses smart meters to get a handle on water consumption
http://blacklistednews.com/Sustainable-%26-Arrested-Development%3A-Dubuque-uses-smart-meters-to-get-a-handle-on-water-consumption/10928/0/0/0/Y/M.html

Source: GCN

The City of Dubuque, Iowa, has teamed with IBM on a project to better understand water consumption and conservation in the municipality.

The Smarter Sustainable Dubuque Water Pilot Study’s goal is to show how informed and engaged citizens can help make their city sustainable. The study started in September and will run to December, and initial study results will be available by the end of the year.

Initially, 300 volunteer residents will participate. Dubuque is in the process of installing smart water meters throughout the city. Over the next several months, data will be collected and analyzed, providing information and insight on consumption trends and patterns that will enable both the volunteers and city management to conserve water and lower costs.

Dubuque is upgrading its entire water infrastructure, installing 24,000 new water meters, said David Lyons, the Smarter Sustainable Dubuque project manager. A little over 300 of those meters have advanced capabilities that will monitor water consumption every 15 minutes and transmit that information in an anonymous fashion to IBM Research for analysis, Lyons said.

Dubuque has worked with local manufacturer A.Y. McDonald to integrate a device called an Unmeasured Flow Reducer. This device is designed to augment the water meter in providing the most accurate measurement possible during low-flow use.

IBM Research is using a cloud computing environment to collect and analyze data, said Milind Naphade, program director for Smarter City Services and Smarter Cloud with IBM. “The idea is to validate cloud computing as a mechanism for collecting and managing data and to lower the barrier for entry for cities,” Naphade said.

Cloud computing is Internet-based computing, whereby shared resources, software, and information are provided to computers and other devices on demand.

IBM has built the IBM Smarter City Sustainability Model, which is a cloud delivered asset that provides the city with an integrated view of its water consumption, and energy management. The system is being piloted in 300 residences throughout the city of Dubuque.

The data being collected will be anonymous and contain no confidential information. In the cloud, the data will be analyzed with triggers to spot potential leaks and anomalies, and help volunteers understand their consumption in greater detail. Volunteers can only view their own consumption habits while city management can see the aggregate data.

Every volunteer in the study has a personal identification number that they will use to access a Web portal. The volunteers will be able to view a range of historical and real-time data about their water consumption.

As a result, they can institute best practices to conserve and lower water costs or repair leaks, Naphade said. For instance, Dubuque is matching 50 percent of the cost to repair leaks. Also, the volunteers can use social networking tools such as chats to share best practices with each other anonymously.

Dubuque 2.0, a local initiative to engage citizens in sustainability, is collaborating with IBM and the city on the pilot study to facilitate participant involvement.

The water study is a part of a larger sustainability initiative by city officials to improve the way the city and residents use resources. Dubuque, which has a population of 60,000, has a progressive mayor in Roy D. Buol, who is concerned about sustainable growth, Naphade said.

The vision is for an integrated sustainability system where data from many different city systems and citizen activities can be used to inform sustainability efforts. For example, people can learn how to reduce electricity costs by saving water and learn how to improve health and wellness outcomes by reducing vehicle miles traveled.

A pilot study on electricity usage in nearly 1,000 Dubuque households is also underway and is funded by a grant from the Iowa Office of Energy Independence.

“The water pilot is just the tip of the iceberg, the piece above the water line,” Lyons said. “The key piece is community engagement. You only get sustainable change if you can engage citizens.”
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Offline Overcast

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Re: Now There Are "Smart Water Meters"
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2010, 01:52:15 pm »
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/26/us/26gov.html

Quote
In remarks to the Commonwealth Club of California in San Francisco, where he was commemorating the third anniversary of the state’s ground-breaking law to reduce gases that contribute to global warming, the governor described growing up in Europe after World War II, when efforts at conservation were pervasive, and complained about his four children’s lack of similar discipline.

“We were taught to always switch off the light when you go and leave the room, and that you can only use water sparingly or to drink,” Mr. Schwarzenegger said. “That’s it. Not to waste any water, period. So it’s a totally different atmosphere.”

But his children are prone to taking 15-minute showers, he said.

“So I finally had to implement rules at home,” the governor said, “and tell them that if they take showers that are longer than five minutes that there will be consequences, like they will not be able to go out, where they will not be able to bring friends over, and on and on and on.”

And that is not all.

“I will sometimes spy on them when it comes to the showers and time them,” Mr. Schwarzenegger told his tittering audience. “And I told them if I catch them, there will be something built in that I have from Europe, which only allows you to take a shower for five minutes and then it turns off automatically, which they have in Europe in gymnasiums so you don’t take a shower for too long.”

Lucky for me, I could get a medical exemption for that any day with my skin problems, but still..

I'd rather have my kids take a 15 minute shower and be clean. Not real sure of how 'effective' a 5 minute shower would be, lol.
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Offline Dig

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Re: Now There Are "Smart Water Meters"
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2010, 02:12:42 pm »
Lockheed Martin exposes insanity of Smart Grids...then offers to militirize them






Lockheed Martin Says "Smart Grid" Will Allow China to Hack U.S. Power
http://www.dailytech.com/Lockheed+Martin+Says+Smart+Grid+Will+Allow+China+to+Hack+US+Power/article19800.htm
Jason Mick (Blog) - October 5, 2010 8:20 AM
chunkymonster.. on Oct 7 at 9:52 AM

An old fashioned grid may be inefficient, but it may be easier to secure than a "smart grid". Much of the benefits of a smart grid come from internet connectivity, and that connectivity opens the door to attacks.
 
Coincidentally Lockheed Martin happens to sell security software.

Lockheed Martin's General Manager of Energy & Cyber Services, Kenneth Van Meter, speaking with green-power site Smart Planet voiced some dire warnings about the United States' push to adopt a "smart grid".  According to Mr. Van Meter, the transition poses a glaring threat to the security of the U.S.

He comments, "Right now if I wanted to cut off the power to your house, I’d climb the pole, and there’s a manual switch. Everything’s physical. Once we have a smart grid in place I could do that from China."

"The sheer volume of interactive devices on two-way networks is the biggest risk. By the end of 2015 we will have 440 million new hackable points on the grid. Nobody’s equipped to deal with that today."

When asked about the worse case scenario he remarks:

There are three. The one everyone thinks about is the neighborhood kid or someone in another country turning off the power to the neighborhood or the hospital in the middle of night. While no one wants that to happen, it’ll be detected pretty quickly, so it’s not a disaster.

The second potential problem has to do with voltage control. If you want to optimize the amount of power the electrical company has, you want to engage in voltage control, where you have devices along the line from the substation. You can adjust the voltage, everyone gets the right voltage, and everyone’s appliances are running more efficiently. Putting in those devices is expensive, and now those become hackable points–because if you can control them, then someone else can control them. So if your power is out, that would be highly inconvenient. But what if they ran the voltage up and down on your house and when it was fixed, the voltage-sensitive equipment like your computer and high-definition TV didn’t work any more?

Third: If you can cause rapid problems in the grid to occur in the right places at scheduled times, you could destabilize the whole grid, black out whole cities or states and cause massive damage. Sometimes this happens accidentally, but it could also happen because someone makes it happen. Some of the devices are very expensive and therefore there are few spares. Substation-sized transformers, for example, aren’t even made in this country anymore and sometimes it can take two years to get one.
Coincidentally, Mr. Van Meter's company sells security solutions to utilities, so his reason for evangelizing about the smart grid's insecurity may not be purely altruistic.  And Lockheed Martin has had its own security woes recently, with Chinese spies reportedly breaking into servers used in the company's F-35 Lightning II fighter project.


Nonetheless, the points raised are largely valid.  Virtually every large piece of software (Windows, Linux, OS X, Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox, Adobe Flash, etc.) created has had vulnerabilities that have been found and exploited.  Its unlikely to think that the software that governs the grid will be free of similar vulnerabilities.

A web-connected grid, like Google Grid or Microsoft Hohm, sounds great on paper, but it introduces a pressing need for security, as people from all over the world can now try to attack the power infrastructure remotely.  And where a typical cyberattack may merely deny people access to a website, or damage their personal computers, an attack on the grid could literally prove deadly.  So Lockheed Martin may be a bit biased, but they're probably right, in this case.
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Offline iks83

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Re: Now There Are "Smart Water Meters"
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2010, 01:53:06 am »
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/26/us/26gov.html

Lucky for me, I could get a medical exemption for that any day with my skin problems, but still..

I'd rather have my kids take a 15 minute shower and be clean. Not real sure of how 'effective' a 5 minute shower would be, lol.

Well I take 5 min showers and manage to get clean. How can anyone shower longer than that? Get wet, rub yourself with soap, get wet again to get the soap off, done.

Anyways its fun how they always call it Smart. I realized quite early that when something is called smart or similar it should be avoided. Like when I started with Windows XP I checked all the services that are run and deactivated those I dont need. Like auto updates... yeah right installing stuff on my machine without my knowledge and option to chose... I can see how smart that is. One service is called, and I translante from the German name, don't know how its called in English, its called Intelligent Background Transfer Service... you don't need to be familiar with Orwellian talk to know to stay away from stuff thats named like that. How can anyone trust something that is transfering data behind your back where you dont know when and what is being sent.

Offline MonkeyPuppet

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Re: Now There Are "Smart Water Meters"
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2010, 02:22:09 am »
Well I take 5 min showers and manage to get clean. How can anyone shower longer than that? Get wet, rub yourself with soap, get wet again to get the soap off, done.

In my case, it's called long flowing naturally beautiful hair (thanks mom!) that requires thorough washing and conditioning at least every other day.  I also prefer not to be rushed whilst cleaning myself with a loofah or whilst carefully cleansing my face.  All of this typically amounts to a 15 minute shower, sometimes longer.  I've also been known to shave in the shower... and not just my face... making for upwards of 30+ minutes, but only once a week or so.

Some can get away with a 5 minute shower, others cannot.  I'm happy to pay for the additional water service I use.  The day they start cutting off my water for this kind of draconian sh*t is the day my plumbing skills get honed to perfection.

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Offline Overcast

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Re: Now There Are "Smart Water Meters"
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2010, 03:56:49 pm »
Quote
Lockheed Martin Says "Smart Grid" Will Allow China to Hack U.S. Power

Then.. GET.. critical.. systems.. OFF THE WEB!

Idiots.
And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willin' to trade ALL the days, from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take... OUR FREEDOM!

Offline birther truther tenther

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Re: Now There Are "Smart Water Meters"
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2010, 11:57:58 pm »

Dubuque, Iowa, becomes 21st Century NWO Sustainable Model City thanks to IBM!

http://forum.prisonplanet.com/index.php?topic=188889.0