Jan 11, 2009

How Googling Effects the Environment

"performing two Google searches uses up as much energy as boiling the kettle for a cup of tea"
(TLS article)

"When you type in a Google search for, say, “energy saving tips”, your request doesn’t go to just one server. It goes to several competing against each other.
It may even be sent to servers thousands of miles apart. Google’s infrastructure sends you data from whichever produces the answer fastest. The system minimises delays but raises energy consumption"

That doesn't seem to be unique to Google, even though the scale of the impact is. Sending search requests to multiple servers is built on the all-too familiar concept of bits and message packets that are the design principle of transfer protocols, and the Internet. Search mechanisms and algorithms have adopted this principle, but search efficiency seems to come at the cost of sustainability (the environment's, that is).


CO2 stats for websites & sustainability optimization:

Service currently involves subscription fees but needs to be free to appeal to individual users as well as corporations.Interesting pricing mechanism: fees are scaled based on how many site views a website getshttp://www.co2stats.com/