Watt-I-See: A Tangible Visualization of Energy

TitleWatt-I-See: A Tangible Visualization of Energy
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsQuintal, F., C. Jorge, V. Nisi, and N. J. Nunes
Conference NameProceedings of the International Working Conference on Advanced Visual Interfaces
Date PublishedJune
Conference LocationNew York, NY, USA
ISBN Number978-1-4503-4131-8
KeywordsEco-feedback, Public installations, Sustainability, user study, visualization

This paper describes a tangible visualization that explores the link between the impact of energy feedback on household consumers and the resource demand impact on energy production. Specifically, it positions a novel perspective attempting to move beyond the known limitations of current eco-feedback systems and contributes to enhance our understanding of how consumers comprehend energy production. The work is informed by a comprehensive study of an installation that displays the ratio of current power generation sources and the percentage of grid renewables. The paper provides design insights for creating novel eco-feedback visualizations that leverage the balance between user lifestyles and the desire to influence consumption behaviors and practices. Evaluation results show an increase in energy literacy and awareness as well as identifies high consumer preferences towards simple, representative interfaces and ubiquitous immediate feedback. Our study shows potential in terms of future scenarios for eco-feedback in distributed energy micro-generation and other inevitable disruptive changes for the energy utility.