Regardless of the methodology that you use to control the temperature in your datacenters, you still need to know what those temperatures are. And while instrumenting individual racks and scattering sensors appropriately throughout your IT load spaces can get you a good idea of what the temperatures are at any location, it can sometimes be difficult to find areas where airflow isn't what is expected and might be causing a local hot (or cold) spot.
Letting datacenter staff find those areas at a glance is the idea behind the C°Flow strip from datacenter equipment maker Telect. This simple piece of plastic changes color based on the temperature surrounding it, much like the stick-on aquarium thermometers that have been available for years. Unlike a thermometer, however, there aren't numbers to read off of the strip, but simply color changes that, at a glance, would allow an IT staffer to get a view into the temperature conditions at that spot in their aisles.
The strips are currently available as an accessory for Telect's datacenter racks, but they have announced plans for other versions of this very simple and hopefully inexpensive tool for later this year.