Home

Welcome! Log in or Join us

Recent Posts

Subscribe to Recent Posts 20 posts found

Oct 12, 2015
Icon_missing_medium shoepuke 13 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

I'll throw my $.02 in here.  I don't think anyone will take offense at anything I'm about to say, but if you're really thin skinned, read no further.

 

Sam, you're a super smart guy, but like most tech people you seem to have shortcomings in marketing.  You need to hit pricepoints that are easy for people to rationalize, and you need to make it easy for people to make decisions monetarily.  That will probably require a lot of work on your end to make it feasible since you didn't create/design SEG with that as a goal.  You should tier pricing and have some low level prices that people wouldn't second guess whether or not they'll sign up.  I don't know what the data and data cost looks like so I don't know how the tiers need to be structured, but I'd say a free tier with 3-4 $ tiers at increments like:

$5/mo. - few streams low retention (can handle ECM-1240?)

$10/mo. - more streams med retention (GEM?)

$20/mo. - most streams long retention (2x GEM?)

$30/mo. - unlimited (crazy shit?)

For me, anything thats @ $10 is a no brainer and I'd just start paying.  My wife interrogates me all the time about subscriptions on the Credit Card statement for $9.99 or 11.99 or $7.99... I just sign up cause heck... it's just the cost of lunch.

 

Also, to make it easier to the user, you should receive all bits, then dump to the bit bucket whatever they're not paying for, rather than the user have to configure the device (perhaps a daily "rollup" of data so if a user is paying for 5 min retention you average data in 5 min increments).  Data againg would be good also as others have mentioned.  Not sure if you're familiar, but something like how VMware vCenter lets you configure data collection/retention.  Screenshot inserted.

You could have intervals of say 10sec, 30sec, 1min, 3min, 5min, 10min, 30min, 60min, 4 hour, 8 hour, 24 hour, and save for X hours, days, weeks, months, years, and you wouldn't need a statistics level.  I definitely expect setting something like this up is not a trivial endeavor.  

The key to making something like this work is maximizing the number of people participating.  I just don't know if you can get enough participants to make is work in such a niche area.  Looks like there are ~1300 users registered if half are uploading data and you can get an average of $15/mo from those users you might be able to make a go of it, and I hope you do!

 

I think many of us here are more than willing to pay for the service you provide, the rest of you stop being so cheap!

 

--Craig

 
Oct 11, 2015
Samotage_300_medium samotage 555 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

I've been reading all this, and thinking about it.

I can't say there is much for me to get excited about.

It would be nice to think I could make a living out of SEG after such a long time, huge effort and personal sacrifice... perhaps it seems not.

Sam, @samotage

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Tony1_medium tnakelsk 169 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Oh noes! You have exceeded your free streams limit!

I tried, but 3 streams free doesn't even cut it. Need to decide on my mains and solar, watts or power. Can't have both, that counts as 4 streams...  This sucks. So I think I'm going with watt's and keeping my voltage. From feast to famine. This really sucks...

Can someone explain to me what this mean "Create Dashboards" which under the free has a Delete_24big red X, does that mean we don't have a DASH board at all?

 

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Create_profile_pic_medium Robos 2 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Really interesting to see this pan out, As Sam mentioned i have a very high data rate and 33 streams, including Solar and all the house cicuits 23 measuring current, 8 temp, hot water boiler temp, out house temp in case of frost etc, with another 20+ calculated streams ontop of those.

I even measure the earth leakage, as this has proved invaluable sussing out what trips the breakers. I think my long suffering wife finds these things a tad sad, but as an engineer, I find the data both interesting and addictive, log in every day, it has spotted alsorts, from the kids leaving the cabin heating on, to a broken tank stat which left the boiler trying to do just that, with the hot water.

Data wise i could of course remove at least 50% of the streams as they are fairly inactive, slow the data right down and compromise the history to make the account affordable. But this isn't why I do it, so what will probably happen is I will find another way if your costs are to restrictive. 

Sam, for what its worth, I think the best why to make this project sustainable, cost effective and provide a return for all your very hard work, is to charge an annual account fee and a data storage/size related charge, but offer a download and delete facility to keep this under control. Discouraging high data rates removes the ability to spot faults, such as earth leakage issues on appliances as they trip rcd's etc dumbing down the GEM's ability, so sort of defeats the point of all the effort.

After all this time and the huge amount of work Sam has put into this project, it would be unthinkable if it were to gradually disappear, I think there is still a huge amount of potential if the sums work, as energy and its use is coming ever more into focus, so the potential of a large company buying into this must be very real very soon.

Additionally, perhaps you could turn it into a Ltd company and sell shares to your supporters, with a dividend based on profits etc?

That could provide you with a chunk of capital and an income, assuming you own a fair few of the shares of course.

Robos/Mark

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Tony1_medium tnakelsk 169 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

A 100 plus streams and the reasons why.

The quote below kind of sums it all up.

"All this helps make the invisible visible - to paint a picture of where to focus on energy efficiency initiatives helping to decide what to do next from insulation, changing lights, instaling solar or just turning stuff off."   

 
Oct 8, 2015
Icon_missing_medium dkresge 1 post

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Sam, you mentioned that some people have over 100 streams and wonder what they do with all that data.  I'll admit to being one of them and can at least shed some light on my own usage.  

Several years ago, it took me one whole costly California billing cycle to determine that an errant Playstation 3 was consuming ~120W when idle.   Not wanting to repeat, I decided to track power in the house we just moved into.  Completely electric, it has 3 panelboards comprising ~50(!) individual circuits.  

A GEM supports 32 circuits -- so it seemed reasonable to connect as many as possible and track them individually (otherwise I'm either wasting ports or losing resolution).  Since doing so would leave me with 18 untracked circuits, the logical answer was 2 GEMs.   I then added a pulse counting water meter and some temperature sensors -- because why not?

SEG served this data up beautifully as a dashboard for my house.  It showed me the outliers and gave me insight into the baseline.  It gave me faith in the power company's meter, and has started me down the path to rooftop PV solar (more data!).

But the fact is, most of the circuits are idle (no-load) 95-99% of the time; I still haven't found where the mystery breaker "freezer" goes.

I've recommended your site to others with an incredulous "I can't believe it's free".  You've stumbled upon one of those exceedingly rare opportunities on the internet for monetization -- and I will happily pay.  But honestly, I, like others, thought the pricing about 10x higher than the value it might some day afford me.  So in the interest of supporting your endeavour, I signed up for a premium membership, but I deleted most of my streams and started looking at openenergy CMS.  Probably not the reaction you were hoping for.

Lastly, in addition to all the great ideas here (aging and deletion), I commented on the idle circuits because I'm curious if you're actually storing every data point.  If so, and if storage is truly the largest cost, I'd also suggest an alternative strategy -- run length encoding of deltas for example.

Apologies for the wall of text.  I look forward to seeing how this thread progresses and wish you and SEG all the best.

Regards,

-D 

Stream Addict

 

 

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Img_7693_medium sroof 16 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Sam - I'm going to have a hard time justifying any cost greater than US$100 / year.  And with a paid subscription service, I'd expect greater documentation and customer support than currently exists.

Since data storage costs are the cost driver, then consider pricing schemes that reduce the storage costs.  I use SEG primarily to monitor daily trends.  I could get by with just a few weeks of data stored at SEG.  I like the ideas already presented by others here:

  • Ability to set different retention periods by stream

or more simply,

  • Automatically delete data older than a specified time

A pricing scheme based on a total storage allotment, i.e., $xx per gigabyte per year, might be easiest overall, both for administrators and for users.

 

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Icon_missing_medium jpellet 42 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

to me its sounds like figuring out someones invoice based on there streams... and streams they add and remove at any givin time is going to be a real PIA not to mention  people tracking their cost and complaing  (for lack of a better work) to SAM continueously....  

 Sam we love the product... please decide on resonable data rates and resonable simple pricing that you and us .. can live with.. ...  

 

$10/month...  set limits to data rate... (do not accept rates to high),  limit streams to 100,  keep data for 1yr??..

 

jp

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Icon_missing_medium gdruce 16 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Hi Sam

Updates on my question and some more ideas for community discussion

Data Rate

Did some further browsing, and think I might have found a candidate file for updating the data rate.

I'm on a SegBox V2.0

/root/config_segbox.lua

Has a line under the General Controls section contains

data_rate = 45         -- seconds default, to be updated from the cloud

From the earlier notes in this discussion I take it that the updated from the Cloud is reserved for future expansion.  I note that this data rate, seems to match the reported data rate on my streams.

So if I push this value out, then I should be backing off my data rate right ?

Reducing my Data Foot Print - Different Rention Periods by Stream

The other item that might be of interest... or perhaps as a separate thread, is where I can indicate to drop data over time.  eg If I require only instantaneous energy (Kw), but would like to track power (KwH) over time, is there an easy way to flag different retention periods by stream ?

Deleting old data

On a similar thread would you look to support DELETE methods on the REST API  so I could delete my own data to reduce my data footprint, hinting that I would be interested in a pricing model that let me reduce my data retention costs if that is a key source of pain.

Data Offload

Similar to the deletion of old data, another option that might be useful for me is the ability to download and then delete old data.  That way I can take on my own data retention headaches, and leave you to focus on the current data.

Paying up front to reduce the Monthy Invoice cost

On the reducing the Admin cost, I would be open to some pay up front (eg annually) to avoid the monthly invoicing cost.  This seem common on other monitoring systems like alarms.

Hope you don't mind me throwing further ideas into the ring over time.  Keen not to loose the service, that means keeping you viable and with time available for the fun stuff.

Ta

Glenn

 
Oct 8, 2015
Icon_missing_medium gdruce 16 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Hi Sam,

SSH is no worries, but a path and filename where the data rates should be configured would be helpful, perhaps as a sticky post.

Ta

Glenn

 

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Icon_missing_medium Frogmore 7 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Well the new pricing certainly seems better (at least compared to the prior one).  However, there is a big jump from free to the minimum charge with seemingly not much benefit.  For someone new coming in, three is a pretty significant limit and $5/month is a pretty big jump to get to the 4th stream.  I realize there is a cost for the work for billing so here are a few suggestions:

  1. Include 20-30 1min streams with the min $5/month charge so it at least seems like I am getting something for that minimum fee.
  2. Have people deposit (min $5 to $25) money and deduct usage from that.  This is what voip.ms does and it seems reasonable.
  3. If storage is the real cost driver, charge based on the used storage (and provide tools to easily delete old realtime data, even if it is not easy/possible to preserve the 30min and/or daily data
  4. Allow users to set a max limit on a stream at SEG with decent UI to make it easier to deal with things that do not provide great control

The free ride has been great, but I am sure the expectations for service/features will increase dramaically when people are actually paying for the service.  I know I was both disappointed and not surprised when I saw the notice.  Years ago, you said you would charge for it at some point.  In some respects it is surprising it has taken this long.  From a data visualization capability point of view this service is better that anything else I have seen out there.  But, some of the UI is difficult to use.  I have always wondered how/who paid for all the servers.  Now I have to figure out what I want to do.

I have a couple of questions. 

Do streams that are not active count, i.e. they would be $0.10/ month?

Is that $AUS or $US?

 

Thanks

 
Oct 8, 2015
Samotage_300_medium samotage 555 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

It's not really that feasable considering the growth in recent times.  The vast majority of data is relatively new.

It may be dropped at some point - if the service can continue!

Sam, @samotage

 
Oct 8, 2015
Samotage_300_medium samotage 555 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Hey Sandeen,

The data rate is the average distance between data points over a period of time, irrespective of how often the API is hit.

Data storage is the killer.  Lost several months (of my time storage is cheap in comparison!) this year dealing with it...  

Sam, @samotage

 
Oct 8, 2015
Samotage_300_medium samotage 555 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Hey jpellet,

If the streams aren't in SEG then you won't be charged!  The excess data in the incoming will just end up in the bitbucket from the api processing.  It would be smarter to configure the GEM accordingly I'd think.

Sam, @samotage

 
Oct 8, 2015
Icon_missing_medium jpellet 42 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

?? on what constitutes a stream??..  my GEM will output  32  *_p and *_E values to SEG.....  I dont think there is a way to stop the packet from sending both... My question is ... if i do not use many of the e type streams and delete them  from "streams" in SEG ... would you still get charged.. 

I guess putting it another way... are we charged for what is coming in... or what we use... (if u can even tell??)  in the SEG

 

I fear the answer is you pay  for what is coming in... and since we cannot change what comes out of GEM (that i know of?)

 ... paying for 32 of the 64 "streams" that are not used... is an even bigger bummer...

 

Thanks

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Samotage_300_medium samotage 555 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Hey Sandeen,

Some people have over a hundred!  Some of them are running 11 second data rates - that is a lot of data...  You seem to have a sensible number of streams.  The question in my mind, is what do everyone do with so much data?

The stream doubling is the smartest way to do the power/energy stuff.  Early on in the life of SEG the derivation of energy from power was experimented with - and it proved to be problematic in terms of variable time gaps and offline periods...  Energy needs to be continually integrated at the measurement point to calculate it correctly.

Hey Downs pig, welcome to the discussion!

Annual billing is an option, as well as quarterly - it needs to be set up by request at the moment.

Sam, @samotage

 

 
Oct 8, 2015
Image_medium Downs pig 1 post

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Hi Sam

 

First post ever, I am a small user and would be happy to pay an annual fee rather be hit with account keeping fees every month!

Regards

 

Ross

 
Oct 8, 2015
Samotage_300_medium samotage 555 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Ok People,

I have listened, and published new pricing.

https://smartenergygroups.com/pricing

This is significantly lower, and should change the discussion.  

A couple of points I'd like to make:

- Many people have a lot of data streams, and at times I wonder why so many?

- Robos, you have a particuarly high data rate, reducing this to a more sensible rate will make a big impact on your costs.

- This stuff is tricky, I'm not sure many know of the staggering complexity underneath SEG - It is not something I am going to go on about, however at some point I need to make some money so it can contunue.

- Free is a perspective.  Consider the pig, it doesn't pay for it's meals because the pig is the product. I don't want the SEG members to be the pig... think of the Facebook etc.

Let me know your thoughts.

Sam, @samotage

 
Oct 7, 2015
Create_profile_pic_medium Robos 2 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Hi Sam

I really appreciate the last couple of years with SEG, however i would add my name to the list of users that will have to pull the plug at the proposed pricing. Quite right to point out data rates, your overheads and the need for cost recovery, and even a profit. No problem with that and would be happy to pay my share, but at $50+ a month, it is not an option.

I think that recovery of our previous data should be made possible, perhaps at a modest cost and the pricing reduced by a factor of at least 10.

I will watch the forum with interest to see how this develops.

 

Regards

Mark

 

 
Oct 7, 2015
Icon_missing_medium jpellet 42 posts

Topic: SEGmeter / Configuring Data Rates to work with the new pricing plans ?

Sam,

 

For the record... I agree with sandeen regarding past history data...

 If that does help your situation...I could easily  live with  maybe a 2 month back look at most...  The past save no $$...  its the present I like to track....

 

Thanks for listening to us...

jp

 

 

Next page

copyright © 2008 Smart Energy Groups pty ltd