I know it’s a gamble to think that my wife or kids would be reading Best Practices … but in case you do … my birthday is right around the corner … and I want one of these:

Gadgets like the Canadian-based ecobee Smart Thermostat are coming to America!  ecobee has partnered with Brady & Associates, as well as opened a new office in Florida, to roll out this digital, energy-saving thermostat.  The ecobee has an integrated programmable smart thermostat with a WiFi-enabled touchscreen that automatically sets your household to conserve energy with a touch of a button. 

The ecobee can now also be purchased online … but that’s not the only thing happening via the Internet.  You can actually monitor and control your home temperate remotely from a personalized web portal.  That means I won’t have to get out of bed at night to turn on the air conditioner … I can use my Blackberry (… or iPhone … another birthday wish …)

This post, however, is not entirely about my wants and desires.  Let’s talk about this little gadget’s effect on the green building industry.  For example, the ecobee Smart Thermostat was installed in the Minto’s Inspiration line of echo-homes, which has been touted as "one of Canada’s greenest homes."  It has been reported that the ecobee company built its product platform around the LEED rating system.  The company’s Smart Thermostat was even selected for use in the "Smart Home: Green + Wired 2009" exhibit in March of this year, presented by Wired Magazine in partnership with Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry.  The promotional material indicates that the device can recoup its $385 price tag within the first 12-18 months of use.

Has anyone out there installed and used an ecobee?  Let me know before July 12 … that special date right around the corner!