A thermostat that learns (with a face like an iPod)

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What’s a powerful way to change behavior? Get instant feedback that’s easy to read and act on. It’s a theme that runs through many TEDTalks, from Gary Wolf’s talk on tweaking your personal metrics to Christopher deCharms’ demo of a cutting-edge use for fMRI to manage pain. So we’re intrigued by a new device to measure, display and give feedback on your home energy use: the Nest Learning Thermostat, introduced today by ex-Apple VP Tony Faddell.

As Steven Levy writes today in’s Gadget Lab:

Fadell explained his concept: Untold tons of carbon were being pumped into the air, with people losing billions of dollars in energy costs, all because there was no easy, automatic way to control the temperature. But what if you could apply all the skills and brilliance of Silicon Valley to produce a thermostat that was smart, thrifty and so delightful that saving energy was as much fun as shuffling an iTunes playlist?

The dialable interface comes courtesy of Mike Matas (watch his TEDTalk).

Read more in this New York Times piece on Nest Labs >>

… and at >>