March 15, 2009, 7:25 PM —
As a CIO, I get a ton of sales calls from vendors promising massive savings if I “just give them the opportunity.” In most cases, that’s as far as a vendor gets unless he has a really, really compelling story. A few weeks ago, I was a little wary when one of my colleagues asked that I speak with a local vendor about a device that could save us a ton of money. Out of respect for my colleague, I set up the meeting.
Imagine my surprise when a local guy based in Fulton, Missouri walked into my office to talk to me about a “green” device that he and some of his friends invented and are in the process of refining. Before I get into what makes the System Tamer unique, consider this: How often do you or your users religiously turn off your computer each evening (to save electricity) only to forget to turn off your monitor, printer, and speakers? Even though a monitor will go into a low power mode after a period, the fact is that the monitor is still consuming a trickle of power. Your printer acts the same way; the low power mode is not a no power mode. Finally, speakers simply stay on all the time and don’t shut down. They draw power as long as power is supplied.
Or, perhaps you need to allow your computer to go into its low power sleep mode so that updates can be applied overnight by the IT department, so you simply try to remember to turn off your monitor, speakers and printer before you go home. Most corporate computers are configured to go into low power mode after a period of time. How often do you forget to turn off the peripheral devices and how much does this cost your company and affect the environment?
That’s where the System Tamer comes in. The System Tamer looks like an ordinary six outlet brick that you plug into a wall, but it’s far from ordinary. The System Tamer’s six plugs and broken down into two groups – the top group of three outlets provides 24/7 power to each connected device while the bottom three outlets are slaved to the top left 24/7 plug to which you connect your computer’s power.
Now, suppose that you’ve forgotten to turn off your peripherals and your computer goes into its sleep mode after an hour of inactivity. The System Tamer will sense when the power consumption of your computer goes below a certain threshold and will automatically cut the power to the three lower outlets to which your peripheral devices are connected. The result - an effortless way to immediately reduce the energy consumption of your peripheral devices.
As I mentioned, I’m especially excited to talk about this product since its inventors live in my back yard. The company is still very new and all units are currently built by hand, but they’re working on mass-production possibilities while they continue to refine the unit; for example, they’re now adding a control to the device that manages the power threshold below which the System Tamer cuts power to peripheral devices. Their product is pending patent approval as well and they’re working on UL certification so that they can eventually sell the devices in places like WalMart.
I will admit that their web site needs some work, but the important information is there. Personally, I think that this device will enjoy a huge market once the group is able to expand their production capabilities and bring down the price per unit. For now, it’s an incredibly ingenious concept and one that can result in immediate energy savings for companies deploying the units.