I like to collect data. It’s rarely interesting at a single point in time, but over the years, it can provide insights or show trends that I didn’t know existed.
For example, my irrigation controller is based on a Raspberry Pi. There’s a webpage for it and it has an API so I can download the actual runtime of each zone. I’ve measured the amount of water used for a minute in each zone (by watching my water meter) so I can get a rough estimate of how much water I’m using through the system overall. Some of the variability is due to the weather, but I’ve also been tweaking the algorithm to automatically adjust the watering schedules based on the forecast.
I have a similar logging system for my HVAC. I haven’t been successful in reducing these costs much as I think I had it pretty optimized to begin with.
So yes, this is geeky, but it’s also frugal. Two things that are super attractive, right?