The ancestral state of the TAS2R38 gene is C145, C785,
G886—so the nontasting alleles arose after the human lineage split from other primates. Research suggests that the ability to detect the bitter tastes in food may have had a selective
advantage in avoiding poisonous plants, many of which are bitter.
The purpose of this experiment is to test which of us (out of six selected people) have carried on that selective trait.
So far I have isolated six DNA samples using a saline (0.9% saline solution (NaCl)), microcentrifuge and a thermal cycler, and I have amplified the DNA by PCR. The next steps will be to digest samples with HaeIII, and analyze gel by electrophoresis.

The PCR machine is currently heats PCR tubes at 91˚ to amplify the DNA. Soon the DNA double helix separates, creating two single-stranded DNA molecules. After it cools down to about 50˚C, single-stranded DNA molecules naturally attempt to pair up. The extra primer sequences lock onto their target before strands can rejoin. Then it will heat back up to 72˚C which activates DNA polymerase. When DNA polymerase locates a primer attached to a single DNA strand, it begins to add complementary nucleotides onto the strand. After three times through this process the final product are two strands that begin with primer one and end with primer two. These specific DNA strands are copies of just the segment of DNA you have targeted.


Project Overview

Project: Hotel X Energy Audit
Purpose: The purpose of this project is to monitor and analyze the
energy expended at a major hotel on the coast, using energy
consumption sensors made by Veris Industries. By monitoring the
energy, we can identify and eliminate wasted energy, which is not only
“environmentally friendly,” but also saves thousands of dollars.
Data: Throughout 2011 and 2012, I have collected data through
fingerprinting (visually analyzing data through graphs, and
identifying appliances), and mathematically breaking down the data
into weekly averages. Because I have about a year of data recorded, it
is all on the weblog.
Progress: Throughout the year, this project has saved this hotel over
a hundred thousand dollars. This has been done by putting the chiller
on a “cruise” mode, which ended up saving several hundreds of dollars
a month. Furthermore, it was HELCO had mixed up their clients, and had
been overcharging by 10 cents per kWh.
Tools used: Ipad and facetime for video conferences (note that I had
never been down to the hotel, and all of this was done through the
resources at the lab), Current relay (senor) made by Veris Industries,
monitors in monlab, antenna to make connection to the lab.
Next steps: Continue to monitor, learn, and look for ways to reduce
energy consumption.

Project: Hotel X Golf Course Energy Audit
Purpose: Expanding the energy-auditing project to the golf center at
the hotel. We will create an electric power management system that is
designed to charge a large group of golf carts efficiently by rotating
which golf get charged, at a time rather than all of them charging all
the time. This will significantly reduce the high cost of the 400 golf
carts at the hotel, as charging the golf carts costs the same as
paying eight employees.
Data: Because the project has not started yet, I have no official
data, but I have a lot of information on the system now, and how we
are going to change it. Furthermore, I have been in contact with
people down at the hotel to launch the project.
Tools used: Ipad and facetime for video conferences, current relay
(senor) made by Veris Industries, some kind of charge regulator
(watmiser?), monitors in monlab, antenna to make connection to the
Tools/resources needed: Although we may already have one, we need the
charging system.
Next steps: Get the project launched! And once that happens, record
information and figure out where improvements can be made.

Project: Parker Ranch
Purpose: Monitoring leaks, water pressure, efficiency and other
factors at the 29 million gallon water tank at Parker Ranch using
cameras and sensors made by Veris Industries.

Data/progress to date: The project was just approved by parker ranch
so we are just about to launch it. Other than that we have worked on
establishing a connection between station 6 and the lab using
Tools used: Ipad and facetime for video conferences (note that I had
never been down to the hotel, and all of this was done through the
resources at the lab), Current relay (senor) made by Veris Industries,
monitors in monlab, antenna to make connection to the lab, cameras
that can see 360 degrees.
Next steps: Begin collecting data, analyzing the data and making improvements.

Project: OpenPCR
Purpose: OpenPCR is a portable machine that allows to you make several
copies of the DNA for analytical purposes. PCR is used every day to
diagnose diseases, identify bacteria and viruses, match criminals to
crime scenes, and in many other ways. In this project I will do things
like swab cheeks extracted DNA, and use OpenPCR to copy out a few
genes, like for Muscle Performance, or test food for genetic
Data/progress to date: I have read the whole manual for OpenPCR, and I
am going to start collecting data next week.
Tools used: PCR machine, USB, computer, OpenPCR control software, gel
electrophoresis, sample tubes, microcentrifuge
Tools/resources needed: We might need a genelaser kit. Other than
that, I think we have everything.
Next steps: To get started!

Project Description: Ham Radio Project
Purpose: To become a “ham” (get my ham radio license) and to learn
about how it works, and how to communicate with people. Also, a goal
is to become familiar with the different kinds of radios Bill has and
how to use each one.
Data/progress to date: I Have read most of the first ham radio book
and I have also become a lot better at finding other “hams” on the
radio. However, I don’t only know how to using the computer program
for ham radio.
Tools used: Ham radio (one of the many), software/applications for ham radio
Next steps: Take the test to get my license and become a skilled “ham”
on and off the computer.


Ham Radio Notes

When using a transceiver that displays the carrier frequency of phone signals, a displayed frequency of 3 kHz below the upper band edge will result in a normal USB emission being within the band.

•When using a transceiver that displays the carrier frequency of phone signals, a displayed frequency of 3 kHz below the upper band edge will result in a normal USB emission being within the band.



Monday 9/1 Parker Ranch

On Monday, September first, we went up to the water tanks at Parker Ranch to establish a wireless connection between the Energy Lab and the water tank station. This would give us Internet connection roughly 20 miles from the lab. The original plan was to use the Power Bridge M-5, which is the antenna that forms the wireless connection, to find the Energy Lab antenna and make the connection. However, because of the preciseness of the Power Bridge M-5, it was too difficult to find the Energy Lab antenna and therefore, we were not able to establish a connection. Then, we tried the Nano Station M-2, which is less precise with two gigahertz rather than the Power Bridge M-5’s five gigahertz. When this also didn’t work, we tried using the Nano Station M-2 along with the Bullet M-2, which is a far more basic antenna. However, the Nano and the Bullet started “talking” to each other rather than making the connection with the Energy Lab so we disconnected the Nano and used the Bullet to establish our connection.

to be continued...

Parker Ranch


IT Building

Although my project started with the IT Building last year, we never really made any major steps forward. However, today, Dr. Bill let me in on another possible project involving the IT Building and G-pack. The goal would be to make those two buildings as sustainable as possible. Because the IT Building is currently running with sensors off of Elab, I am going to start with just taking the kWh averages for the IT Building today, next week, and mid-spring break. This way I can compare the use of the building during a full academic week, to the week of olympics where students are on campus but the computers are not in use, to mid-spring break, where students and teachers are not even on campus.

Solving the problem: Students will not be using the IT building on weekends or at night, so why have the AC on 24 hours a day? One solution to this is putting in a override X300 which is a timer that will set off the AC at appropriate times. Right now, the IT building costs the school about $4,000 a month due to energy use. With this project, it is possible to cut it down to $1,000. Over a year, that is enough to give a boarding student a free ride.
Because the Elab server has a polling time of 4 minutes instead of 5, like on the Elab2 server, the dividing number should be 15 instead of 12. Thus, making the equation:
samples/12(average)=average kWh

IT Building Averages-Week of March 1-7
Daily Average of Thursday March 1st 214.848 kWH
Daily Average of Friday March 2nd 204.660784 kWh
**Daily Average of Saturday March 3rd 150.073978 kWh
**Daily Average of Sunday March 4th 131.691226 kWh
Daily Average of Monday March 5th 232.292218
Daily Average of Tuesday March 6th 214.376371 kWh
Daily Average of Wednesday March 7th 232.712525 kWh
WEEKLY AVERAGE 197.246443 kWh
**=School not in session/not academic work-day

Daily Average March 10th 221.727192 kWh
Daily Average March 11th 0 kWh (?)
Daily Average March 12th
Daily Average March 13th
Daily Average March 14th
Daily Average March 15th
Daily Average March 16th

Due to complications with the sensors hooked up at the IT building, there has been no data available on the elab server.


Golf Carts

As previously discussed, we are now expanding the energy auditing project to the golf center at the hotel. Although there are many possible projects at the golf center, we are starting with the golf carts. The golf carts down at the hotel are plugged in to be charged immediately after use. The cost to charge the hundreds of golf carts matches the payment of about 5 employees. To try to escape these high costs, the hotel bought a the Watt-Miser, which is an electric power management system that is designed to charge a large group of golf carts efficiently. Essentially the program automates charging of electric golf carts during off-peak hours. The Watt-miser does this by charging groups of golf carts at a time (group 1, group 2, etc.); when one group is fully charged, it movers on to the next group. According to the Watt-Miser website, savings can be from 10 to 60%, depending on the area. In one example, a 70 car fleet could save an average of $550 per month.(

However, for many reasons, the hotel does not use the Watt-Miser.
This picture tho the left, is an example that, although there are other significant expenders of energy at the golf course, golf carts is the overwhelmingly "big spender."
That said, the machine is also very stupid, and
is not "top of the notch" technology; therefore, may not have worked as advertised anyway. What we can do, is figure out a way to use the Watt-Miser affectively, determine how to lower the energy expended on the golf carts, monitor what percentage of the golf course funding is going to the golf carts, and toy with alternative energy possibilities that can be used on the golf course. All of this will be done the same way it was done at the VAC.

This picture to the left, is a possible output for the sensors that will soon be place at the golf course.


Averages 2012

Although I have continued to keep weekly averages, I decided it was important to post a weekly average every couple months to contrast it to the averages of the previous months.
Averages; week of February 20th-26th:


Daily Average of February 20th
96.80 kWh
Daily Average of February 21st 102.9 kWh
Daily Average of February 22nd 98.875 KWH
Daily Average of February 23rd 100.76 kWh
Daily Average of February 24th 89.47 kWh
Daily Average of February 25th 90.2 kWh
Daily Average of February 26th 94.54 kWh

Daily Average of February 20TH 177.4 kWh
Daily Average of February 21ST 207.06 kWh
Daily Average of February 22nd 175.175 kWh
Daily Average of February 23rd 178.04 kWh
Daily Average of February 24th 174.269 kWh
Daily Average of February 25 157.85 kWh
Daily Average of February 26th
172.26 kWh

Daily Average of February 20TH 3.1812 kWh
Daily Average of February 21st 4.266kWh
Daily Average of February 22nd 3.302 kWh
Daily Average of February 23rd 3.348 kWh
Daily Average of February 24th 3.372 kWh
Daily Average of February 25th 3.262 kWh
Daily Average of February 26th 3.514 kWh



Because my knowledge of fingerprinting was based off the office supplies and the hotel, it was very limited to things like computers, printers, chillers, vending machines, xerox machines, etc. Wanting to expand on that, I started observing one of the graphs of the Energy Lab during F period, Environmental Lit. By doing this, I am able to compare the appliances used in the class to the graph, which later allows me to link each appliance to a graph. Therefore, my knowledge increases from office supplies, to all supplies.

For example, F period met at 10:20Am on February 14th. Right at 10:20, there us a spike seen in panel c12 (dark blue). Because I am familiar with the behaviors of the people in the class, I am able to deduct that the spike was caused by a hot water boiler for tea or a coffee maker. Furthermore, I am aware that this class watched a movie on February 14th. This is see in panel b13 (orange), as there is a spike of about 250 kWh, that is maintained for the duration of the class.

This side project, or better described as research, will not only assist me with the expansion of this project into the golf center, but will allow me to expand my knowledge of fingerprinting to domestic use rather than just for business. Over the next few months, I am going to put together a portfolio on "How to Fingerprint."It will include what different items might look like on the graph, as well as how to figure out an unknown by using your knowledge of similar appliances.