The U.S. Energy Department has just officially opened the doors for submissions in its Apps for Energy Contest. The general contest guidelines are pretty simple. Developers can submit any original application for a mobile handheld device, personal computer, or any platform that grants easy access to the web, as long as it pertains to energy use, and uses Green Button data.
The goal of these apps should be to help homeowners and businesses make well-informed decisions about their energy use, and give them the tools to better understand their energy use in general. While a list of contest FAQs can be found be found here, the following are some ideas for apps that have been submitted by everyday people for developers’ consideration:
- Similar to the helpful reverse phone lookup technology, a green app that allows the user to plug in information like area or zip codes and come up with the statistical data for that area’s energy use.
- An app that helps building owners view and compare savings for different energy saving investments.
- A way for personal homeowners to view their daily, weekly, or monthly energy map, and see which appliances are costing them the most.
- Add a social aspect to an app that allows users to interact with one another and share ideas and information about different energy related concepts.
And these are only a few of the endless ideas that everyday citizens have come up with so far. First place winners will be taking home $30,000, with second and third place winners raking in $15,000 and $7,500 respectively. In addition to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place prizes, there are also 3 cash student award prizes starting at $15,000, as well as 3 other cash prize choice awards for various specific apps. Also each winning team will have three team members flown to Washington D.C. to present the apps.
The contest will be closed to submissions on May 15, 2012. Until then, there’s plenty of time for all you creative developers to come up with, and bring to fruition, a great application that may help lead the country to some big energy saving solutions, and also put a nice chunk of change in your back pockets.