Home Energy Monitoring App Busts Aussie Teen's Secret Party

The only thing a father cares about more than his kids is his kids wasting electricity. And it was South Australian dad David Rowe's obsession with monitoring his home's power usage that helped him bust his daughter's secret New Year's eve party.

Using a $US120 device called a Fluksometer -- which connects to a fuse box and wirelessly reports your home's energy use to an Android app -- he was able to see a spike in power consumption while he was in a restaurant 800km away.

Rowe knew his kids were supposed to be staying elsewhere that night, and he wondered if the recent hot weather would cause a jump in electricity use in an empty house -- say, an extra cycle on the fridge. He logged on remotely to find electricity consumption that looked more like the patterns he recognised from time spent running the air conditioning, lights and television at the same time. That meant one of two things: either someone had broken in and made themselves at home, or his daughter was hosting a party. And, of course, it turned out to be the latter. So remember, kids, if you're lucky enough to have a geek for a dad, don't try to pull any fast ones. We're always connected, and we always know. (Maniacal laugh.) [Rowetel]



    I can't imagine living with somebody that checks the power usage constantly like that. Girl probably needed a party to deal with the stress. (Just my opinion)

      I think the issue here is the girl didnt let her dad know she was going to use his house for the party. Kids these days are the worst, no respect of others, and no self respect. I hope that my kids will never be like this, but then again they might be. And ill know about it like the dad in the story did.

        kids today are no different to kids of yesterday, It's just that there is more technology to get them busted. 10 years ago, this wouldn't be an issue, because the kid woudn't have been caught!

        Hell, I had more then my fair share of ilicit parties, and I know my Dad did too in his time. I'm guessing Gramps did to when he was a kid, but they had cocaine you could buy from the corner store, so his parties were better then ours ....

          It always makes me laugh well people say things like "kids these days..." and "back in my day..."
          How quickly people forget what it was like to be young.

          Also, this Guy David Rowe, was 800km's away, having dinner on NEW YEARS EVE!!!!! and "he wondered if the recent hot weather would cause a jump in electricity use in an empty house"...
          WOW! REALLY?

        Don't get me wrong, I am not saying the girl didn't do the wrong thing. I also don't think there is anything wrong with being energy conscious, but to be so obsessed with the usage that you are monitoring it on your phone sounds crazy to me.

          With the amount power is rising I think it's fine to check the energy usage. Im gunna get me one of these devices to monitor our power usage too!

        dont blame the kids, blame the people and society theyre raised in, they only know what they see and learn, and to say its their fault is ridiculous.

        and that dad is probably a little ocd...

          How can you say it is not the kids fault but the society, when there are plenty of other kids raised in the same society and such who are not doing this?

    Got to agree with MDolley. Can't be easy living with an obsessed dad. *grin*

      You're right, why would someone say something like that? I for one, blame society.

        This was meant to be to Sam, at 11:25... Sorry!

    I'm with the Dad, His House, he's the one thats gotta pay the Electricity bills so good on him.

      I agree. I however would have called the police to check on the house if I was 800km away and the kids were ment to be somewhere else too. After all, could have been stupid crooks.

        Hah, a real nerd would have fired up the remote webcam viewing app and checked the situation out, taking some incriminating snapshots as evidence.

          Dean, you're giving me ideas...

    for Australian compatible version with correct pricing

      Rowetel? That's not David Rowe's company is it? LOL

    That really fluked up her plans... :)
    That's all that went through my head over the unfortunate name of that device.

    I just noticed that too. I cry foul on this story. If you go to the Flukso website it even has this little paragraph at the bottom of one of the pages: "Note: David Rowe is lending us a helping hand in distributing Fluksometers to Australia and New Zealand. Fluksometers tailored to AUS/NZ 240V power supplies can now be purchased directly from his shop. He has also written a comprehensive blog post on his Australian Flukso installation. Check it out!"

    Oh, it's fishy all right.

    David Rowe, the dad in the story, is the same David Rowe who sells the Fluxometer in the story. Giz, you've been had by a salesman.
    Did the story come from a press release from Rowetel?

    How I wish I'd had a system like this several years ago. I was traveling abroad and found out there out there had been a party when the police called to say an original oil painting had been stolen during an unauthorized rave session! Someone still owes her parents a tub of cash for that stunt.

    I hope the story is fake, coz the dad is way anal. don't need to know when a few appliances are turned on...

    I know David Rowe: in fact he built my electric car... But that's another story. The story seems to have been sourced from his blog. David is not a self promoter ; in fact his passions are open source telecommunication devices to empower third world communities- a quick look at his blog will resolve any doubts you have about this.

      (Electric vehicle.. not exactly this thread) The major part of the conversion took 3 days. The last fiddly bits took 6 months. It's on youtube "3 day electric daihatsu conversion" Cost about $20000 including the first failed set of lead acid batteries.. not recommended and changed to Lithium. Re the self promotion bit- I agree that this is where Gizmodo could have done a quick check and mention the fact that David distributes these.

    Seriously how much power did she use on that party? Apart from having a party when she wasn't supposed to, talk about a new buzzword, MicroParenting

    Rowe may be a nice guy and all, but the story should probably still mention that he's flogging the thing...

    Makes me wonder the cost of the electricity for the party, Vs the cost of the unit itself.

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