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Does the Market Really Want ‘Smart Meter Version 2.0′?

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The Daily Bell
Wednesday, March 14, 2012

New Arm chips herald ‘Internet of things’ … New processors from Arm Holdings use so little power they could allow a new generation of connected devices, from credit cards to light bulbs. Tiny chips could mean even credit cards can be connected to the internet … The chips, just 1mm by 1mm and powered by tiny batteries, will drive the so-called ‘Internet of things’, Cambridge- based Arm Holdings hopes. It anticipates uses across lighting, motor cars and a range of other devices that use new sensors. Many companies are investing machine-to-machine communications, but new processors are required if they are not to consumer significantly more power. Arm’s will sell for less than 20p each, it is expected, and last for years on a single charge. Some analysts expect 60 billion connected devices to be active by 2020. Vint Cerf, one of the founders of the internet, has raised the prospect, for instance, of wine corks incorporating chips so they can alert owners to the best time for wine to be drunk, or raise the alarm if they are opened without the owner’s knowledge. – UK Telegraph

Dominant Social Theme: Ain’t technology grand? It’s what the market wants.

Free-Market Analysis: All right, here we go. Smart Meters aren’t doing so well these days. But it turns out, like the soldiers hitting the beach on D-Day, there are troops in reserve. The “free market” rolls on, as we can see from this report in the UK Telegraph.

Is all as it seems? (Is that ever the case?) We find this to be yet more evidence of a certain kind of elite dominant social theme. The power elite that we cover regularly uses these themes – fear-based promotions – to frighten Western middle classes into giving up power and wealth to specially created globalist institutions.

One of the biggest such memes is the idea that the “free market” itself is “demanding” certain technologies that are useful to the elites in their question for ever-closer global governance.

We can see a primitive version of this approach when it comes to, say, GM: “Government Motors.” Intimidated and dispirited, GM’s top execs were bullied into focusing closely on “Green” electronic cars. How’s that going for them? Well … last we looked, they’d shut down their leading automotive brand, the Volt, due to lack of demand.

And now we find another “market demand” generated technology, courtesy of something called “ARM Holdings.” Does the average person wake up in the morning with the bright idea that super-small chips ought to be invented to connect credit cards to the Internet? Apparently so.

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

And yet … we say no. No more than the average person wakes up one morning with the idea of developing Smart Meters that can keep track of a person’s every energy use and damp that usage independently of the user. You can see some Smart Meter articles here:

California Recall … Beginning of the End for Smart Meters?

Smart Grid: Edge of the Authoritarian Wedge

Of course, Smart Meters haven’t exactly proven to be a hit. Last we looked, the producers and installers were subject to a class-action suit. That hasn’t happened with these tiny little super-chips yet, and perhaps it won’t, but we would argue the impetus is the same.

It’s a meme, a theme. The market is not necessarily crying out for credit cards to be connected to computers anymore than the market in aggregate had a need for electronic cars with batteries that occasionally and spontaneously explode.

Now there is, of course, Say’s Law, which points out that demand is stimulated by supply as well as vice versa. And far be it for us to argue against supplying the market with things that people will want once they see that they are available.

But our real point is that the marketplace – as has been the case for a century – is increasingly flooded with stuff that serves the interests of the elites, not the masses themselves.

It is the elites that want electric cars and Smart Meters. The methodology is always the same: The inventions are aimed at restricting people’s movements and tracking people’s behavior. These tiny chips are a hallmark of further control, in our view.

They can be installed anywhere and presage further elements of tracking by the nascent, global police state. Here’s some more from the article:

Tom R Halfhill, a senior analyst with The Linley Group, said that “Ubiquitous network connectivity is useful for almost everything – from adaptive room lighting and online video gaming to smart sensors and motor control. But it requires extremely low-cost, low-power processors that still can deliver good performance. The ARM Cortex-M0+ processor will be suitable for a broad range of industrial and consumer applications.”

The new, 32-bit Arm Cortex-M0+ processors use around one third of the energy of any 8- or 16-bit processor available today, while delivering significantly higher performance, the company claims. Arm says it is ‘the world’s most energy efficient microprocessor’, and expects it to be used in sensors for medical, domestic and power control uses.

Again, we’d be all for this kind of evolution if we were convinced it was a purely marketplace function and not an elite meme disguised as the Invisible Hand. Our suspicions are further raised when we checked with Wikipedia to find out more about ARM. Here’s the applicable point:

In 2011, ARM renewed a five-year, $5 million research partnership with University of Michigan, which extended their existing research partnership to 2015. This partnership will focus on ultra-low energy and sustainable computing.

So what is “sustainable computing”? Here’s Wikipedia again: “Green computing, green IT or ICT Sustainability, refers to environmentally sustainable computing or IT. In the article Harnessing Green IT: Principles and Practices, San Murugesan defines the field of green computing as ‘the study and practice of designing, manufacturing, using, and disposing of computers, servers, and associated subsystems—such as monitors, printers, storage devices, and networking and communications systems — efficiently and effectively with minimal or no impact on the environment.’”

You see, dear reader? This “green” stuff is like an infection. GM ends up with Chevy Volts and the taxpayer ends up with the bill. In the case of this company, ARM, which wants to “chip” every part of our lives, the principals shall end up with stock options worth millions and we’ll end up with subcutaneous tags.

It is ever thus in the modern age. We have no quarrel with marketplace evolutions. But all around us we see signs that the elites, concerned with manifestations of command and control, are actively driving technology in a certain direction.

This is not merely an academic point. It has investment ramifications. Companies, hounded by power elite pressure from the top, will increasingly develop these products whether or not they are viable or profitable. And YOU, as an investor, can be easily sucked into funding one of these schemes.

Conclusion: Of course, you’ve stopped by here, so we’d argue, perhaps, that you are not such an easy target. But plenty of people are, unfortunately. Another “sign of the times.”

 

This article was posted: Wednesday, March 14, 2012 at 9:55 am





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