Good usability & design in changing home heating behaviour

Seeing the new Phillipe Starke designed thermostat (http://www.stuff.tv/netatmos-philippe-starck-designed-thermostat-simply-beautiful/news) made us think about the role of good usability and design in changing behaviour.

There are lots of factors in play in ensuring we heat our homes efficiently – good insulation etc.  But often ignored is the often poor usability of the thermostat and control devices that come with our heating systems.

The lack of good usability means we don’t adjust the heating to reflect more accurately the use of our homes – so, for example, the heating gets left on when we are out etc.

Hopefully more systems will be able to be connected to the internet or wifi and we can start to control them through a website or smartphone app.  Then we might start to see some better usability and can gain some real control over our heating.  We want better behaviour – make it easier.

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