Nest Thermostat, Data Driven for Your Pleasure and Green Health

Deven Desai

Deven Desai is an associate professor of law and ethics at the Scheller College of Business, Georgia Institute of Technology. He was also the first, and to date, only Academic Research Counsel at Google, Inc., and a Visiting Fellow at Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy. He is a graduate of U.C. Berkeley and the Yale Law School. Professor Desai’s scholarship examines how business interests, new technology, and economic theories shape privacy and intellectual property law and where those arguments explain productivity or where they fail to capture society’s interest in the free flow of information and development. His work has appeared in leading law reviews and journals including the Georgetown Law Journal, Minnesota Law Review, Notre Dame Law Review, Wisconsin Law Review, and U.C. Davis Law Review.

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4 Responses

  1. A.J. Sutter says:

    If people turn down their thermostats because of the glowing of a green leaf, is that the same as their doing so because of concern for the rest of society? From your nostalgia for Carter’s plea, I get the sense that maybe you don’t think it’s the same (I don’t either). BTW here in Japan, people adjust their thermostats for the greater good even without any green leaves; that’s why, e.g., the feared post-Fukushima blackouts and brownouts never happened in Tokyo this summer. So maybe we should recognize that these tech “nudges” aren’t really solutions, but just short-term kludges, and that we should be channeling more of our innovative efforts into rebuilding a sense of solidarity and mutual concern in American society. Merry Christmas.

  2. Ken Rhodes says:

    AJ, I totally agree with you … but …

    I also recognize that many people require some sort of external stimulus to help them with their own behavior modification. Their motive may be pure, but if they have bad habits they might still need some assistance (no matter how silly) to help them achieve their good intentions.

  3. Chris says:

    Here’s another way to do it.. -or one of the many improvements like the seeeduino @ You’ll also need a way of controlling it – like an
    “Ethernet shield”, at least one “DHT11” temp/humidity sensor and
    as many reed relays as you have things to control. Maybe $20-30 more if you want a snazzy touch screen to light up your hallway.
    Cost can be well under $100, or much less. if you control it via a small web server.
    There are tutorials on the net. Here’s an interesting project

  4. A.J. Sutter says:

    Ken, thanks for your comment, and I don’t deny your point — I’m not proposing an either/or choice for policy. Rather, my comment was in the spirit that emphasizing tech isn’t sufficient, in some societies isn’t even necessary, and that while a focus on tech may help to relieve some symptoms of our societal ills, we should put even more emphasis on addressing the causes.