Design Inspiration

March 6, 2013 |  by  |  Inspiration, Malaria

Screen Shot 2013-03-06 at 11.44.36 AM

GE’s Plug Into the Smart Grid

GE’s website features small animations that demonstrate the benefits of their new ‘smart grid’ energy systems. It’s mostly just animation, no interaction, which I found a little confusing when it finally did come interactive with a lever that changed the heights of animations and the numbers as a kind of bar graph infographic (but that part was really cool!).

My main critique of the site is that it’s not obvious what a smart grid is, thought when you delve deeper into the navigation you can pick up clues that it’s new technology that saves you a lot of money in energy. The simplicity of the animations is lovely- but it’s so simple in explanation that the message is not clearly delivered.

One element, which I have never seen before in an interactive website, involves printing out a piece of paper with a marker on it and then clicking on buttons on the website which launch your webcam. From the webcam, an animation shoots out from the marker on the paper and you can turn it and blow into the webcam microphone to see the turbines move and turn. There is a video that demonstrates someone doing this process which makes it very clear. I’m not sure how helpful the feature is in convincing someone to switch, but it is a very interactive VERY cool feature that I’ve never seen before.