“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power” – Abe Lincoln.

I once tallied my power sockets distributed around my house at 84 active outlets. That’s a whole lotta power!  Of course my home has far more gadgets than that – more likely closer to 200 things which could reasonably consume power at any one time – but this was the count of active, powered outlets which could deliver power right then.  It may amaze you, or dismay you, or even simply make you say “so what?” but that gives an average of nine outlets per room in my mid-sized English semi-detached house.

Do I really have 9 things in each room which need power?  Is my home occupied at a ratio of almost 10:1 powered things to people?  Counting CPUs it gets crazy as I once estimated that there were over 32 intelligent things in my house, and that was about 5 years ago.  Since then my light bulbs have firmware updates and I don’t even have an internet TV, however everything else seems to have processing power in some way.

I’ve been on a drive to lower the whole cost of this and recently powered down my dual-CPU, dual-core server rack (with added acoustic padding and low-speed fans) as the Minecraft server herein was no longer needed.  It has been replaced by a smaller, more efficient rack of wall-mounted micro systems (of which see below) and I am saving up to replace them and move the NodeRED stuff to Resin.io to use Docker in place of the underlying Debian.  I like the idea of mixed hardware and movement of services across my environment, however don’t think the system services such as NodeRED nor Nginx are decomposed enough yet into micro-services.  Or are they?  Should I check?

Whatever, power demand from my farm has dropped by whopping amounts quarter on quarter and I am aiming to take it down further over the winter months by upgrading domestic appliances where possible, and monitoring and switching off low-power standby things overnight.  We shall see!

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