Make the Product Fit the User by Britt Storkson Owner, P2FlowLLC When one makes a product, one should make the product to fit the user. Do not make the product user conform, contort, deform, distort, or otherwise cause them discomfort or dismay when using the product. Keep the “learning curve” as compact as possible. Make the user marvel at how simple and easy it is to use, not curse its complexity. We should do this, not because people are dumb - people just have other things they would rather use their brainpower for. In addition to the product fitting the customer’s needs, the product must also fit the customer’s budget. Can they afford the product? Do the benefits outweigh the cost? Will there be any continuing costs like fuel, electric power, water, or waste disposal required for the product? Sometimes the product will be fine, but the constant expense for maintenance of the product will make it a loser. Microsoft Cofounder Bill Gates sponsored a contest to come up with a workable toilet for third world countries. Many clever designs were submitted, and the winning entry was one that required considerable electric power and cost about $500 to buy. This for third world country residents whose average annual income was something like $250 per year and most didn’t have electricity available, much less affordable. Sure this thing worked, but it didn’t work well - not because it did not deal with the human waste properly. It didn’t work well because most of the potential users/customers could not afford to buy and maintain it. Maintenance can be a real killer. One of the problems with alternative energy sources is the amount of maintenance they typically require. When you have to pay someone to maintain something, it gets really expensive. This reminds me of the story about the pushy vacuum cleaner salesman who decided to make house calls in the back woods of Appalachia. He came across one home where the lady he met expressed some interest in the machine he was sell- ing so she invited him in for a demonstration. The man started his sales pitch immediately, then went on and on extolling the virtues of the vacuum cleaner - finishing by dumping a large bag of dirt on the floor of her house. He then said, “If this machine doesn’t pick up all of that dirt in three minutes or less, I’ll eat it with a spoon!” The lady smiled and said, “Well, you better get started because we don’t have any electricity.” The moral of this story? One had better find out what the customer needs and wants, and is willing or able to pay for a product before taking the time and spending the money to develop any product. Otherwise, you have a very expensive disaster. Britt Britt Storkson may be contacted via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org Sweden to Benefit from Geothermal Heating Network Adapted from Information by E.ON and St1 E.ON, a privately-owned energy supplier based in Essen, Germany, plans to build a geothermal deep-heat power plant in Malmö, Sweden. The company will drill boreholes between 16,000-23,000 feet where they expect to locate temperatures around 320ºF (160ºC), which would be enough to feed the heat directly into city’s district heating network. This pilot proj- ect is one of Europe’s first geothermal power plants to extract energy from these depths on an industrial scale. The company is currently drilling boreholes to get a better look at the geological conditions in the area. If all goes according to plan, the plant will supply renewable and efficient heating beginning in 2022. E.ON hopes to have built five geothermal power plants in Malmö by 2028, each with an installed capacity of 50 thermal megawatts. This heat will replace the biofuels and biogas currently used for heat generation. E.ON is partnering with energy company St1 on the drilling portion of the project. St1 completed the world’s first drilling for a deep-heat power plant in Espoo, Finland, a location with similar conditions as those in Malmö. Drilling of the production wells in Espoo, began with air hammer drilling technology, more commonly known as DTH (down-the-hole) drilling, to reach a depth of around 14,760 feet. Once hard bedrock was encountered, the crew continued on using both water hydraulic hammer 42 AUGUST 2020 WorldWide Drilling Resource ® GEO Sweden to Benefit cont’d on page 50.