Deccan Herald - 20th October 2019
Most energy monitoring devices capture data from the energy consumption of a facility or recording the individual energy consumption of each device. This would require the installation of multiple energy meters with complex wiring and intrusions. This was the problem that Gokul Shrinivas and Jeyakumar decided to address with the Minion, a smart device that can be plugged into the main circuit and discern how much electricity is consumed by each device. The duo went on to set up a company, Minion Labs in 2016. The Bengaluru-based startup was among the five startups selected by Facebook and Invest India to receive nearly Rs 35 lakh each ($50,000) as seed funding to further country-first products. Gokul Shrinivas loved hockey however due to his injury he had to leave his playing career. Thus he thought of trying something different. He won a coding contest and bagged a job at Amazon. Working in the Kindle division, he wanted to do something different. Gokul built the Minion in 2015, as a monitoring device and formally set up Minion Labs the following year with his friend. The minion uses Machine Learning (ML) and deep learning techniques and leverages Artificial Intelligence (AI) to disaggregate the net electricity consumption of a building. It tends to learn about the consumption pattern of each device and can tell users the consumption patterns. It is powered by more than 10 million-plus data points, a database of over 10,000 hours of energy signatures, and currently monitors more than 1 lakh assets in real-time, the company says. The company claims an accuracy rate of 98.24% and says that their algorithm can even identify the power source of the device whether it’s a power grid, diesel generator, or a green energy source. Shrinivas said that the product senses electricity consumption (for offices, shopping malls, hospitals, and even individual houses) and streams it to the server through the internet. It is a device that can disaggregate the whole building’s electricity consumption.
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