The TED (The Energy Detective) is a simple home energy monitor that allows you to see electricity usage in real-time. Using Google's Power Meter, or the Iphone apps Mirawatt T5K or Ted-O-Meter you can visualize your usage online or on your mobile phone. Or you can simply attach it to your PC for real-time data logging, graphing, charting, and load-profiles.
Systems like these can be very accurate (when you open your fridge door you will see an immediate 20 watt increase from the 20 watt bulb inside) and can help you save energy by monitoring your usage over time.
From their website:
With its patented solution to home energy management, TED quantifies electricity and displays the results on its easy-to-read LCD screen. Unlike some complicated electricity conservation systems, TED is a simple, intuitive and affordable way to monitor and manage your entire home's energy consumption. Think of it as your home's speedometer.
With its two-second reaction time, TED provides immediate feedback on energy usage. For you, that means no surprises. You can see what you're spending on electricity each second, as well as what you've spent so far today or so far this month.
For a more comprehensive look at your electricity usage, and to really 'see' where you may be wasting electricity (AND MONEY) check out "TED Footprints"... dynamic software that allows you to log your electricity usage on your PC for graphing, charting, seeing trends, load-profiling and much more!
And with the help of TED, you're not only able to better manage your own dollars, you are also helping your neighbors, your community, and the environment through energy conservation."