By constructing two of these circuits allowed me to monitor both LED’s on the power-board. The Raspberry Pi is a tiny computer that is perfect for the tedious task of methodically capturing “blinks” and writing the hourly total to a data store (or streaming to an MQTT broker).
A powerful feature of the Raspberry Pi is the row of GPIO (general-purpose input/output) pins along the top edge of the board. This is an interface between the physical world of lights and wires and the software world of zero’s and one’s
Python is awesome for event driven coding — allowing code to respond to electrical pulses on the GPIO pins on the Raspberry Pi. A function is written to handle the a light pulse (ie., increase a counter) and this function is attached to an event handler for the appropriate GPIO pin.
Running this code for 3 months allowed me to start understanding the rate of power usage each hour. The graph below is daily power consumption trends using a month of data. The horizontal axis is 24 hours, with midnight on the left to 11pm on the right. Minimum consumption is shown in blue, average consumption in orange and maximum consumption in white.
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