Putting pictures and numbers on policies


A friend pointed me to Bret Victor’s clever Ten Brighter Ideas, an (under construction) online interface for exploring the effect of behavioral interventions of American energy consumption.

In honor of my late grandfather, who decided to save money by unplugging his coffee maker before leaving for vacation, I asked the tool “What would happen if 50% of American households unplugged their microwave at night?” The answer: a 0.01% (i.e., one part in ten thousand) decrease in energy consumption.

I like this tool because: