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Our first project: See-a-Watt

There is undoubtedly a pressing need to measure and monitor electricity consumption at the level of households and small/medium businesses (bigger organisations are doing it for decades already). Electricity is getting more and more expensive, and every kWh saved is a kWh earned.

See-a-Watt is our answer to this need, and our contribution to the open source movement. It is based on the Open Energy Monitor project (an open source project itself). The hardware and the software will be released under Open Source licenses, and the entire project will be at the heart of a community ecosystem, much like DIY Drones or Makerbot (at least that’s what we hope).

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Timelapse: OptimaLabs @ BTU Sommerfest

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During my participation in the BTU Cottbus Sommerfest, I wanted to make something fun and cool with the help of Jonathan Saudhof (thanks a lot Josch ;-) ). I saw many timelapse sequences shot in Maker Faires and other events, and I thought why not shoot one, just for fun.

The result is not very professional, but I like it :) It was a nice experience and a useful exercise. Below is the video that summarizes a day in 30 seconds (I made some silly things with iMovie :p).
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Why Berlin?

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Berlin can easily become Europe’s startup capital if it isn’t already.

I read this article about the rise of original, successful tech startups in Berlin, and I think it summarizes my ideas about Berlin, and why it is one of the best places for a company like Optima Labs to see the light and grow. Here is the link for the full post, but I copied a few parts below:

“The new-generation startups and their founders no longer shoot for successful companies in their country (or in Europe), their mission is pure world domination,” says Reber. “If you want to reach this ambitious goal, you have to compete with the most-talented designers, coders and managers on the planet. I can only speak for myself, but I read the most relevant design blogs on a daily basis and I’m also trying to understand how leading tech-companies serve their products to millions of users. I try to understand every new trend that pops up, and I’m pretty sure that the combination of state-of-the-art design, development and the drive to create an extremely successful product pushes the quality of Berlin startups enormously.”

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Optimalabs at the BTU Cottbus Summerfest

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Optimalabs is still in the stage of foetus (third month), but we gave this baby an opportunity to see the world and meet some people. The BTU Cottbus is the youngest university in Germany (20 years old), and this year’s Summerfest was quite special with the traditional international street food, the bands, the rain but also with the presence of our unusual stand: Continue Reading →