Friday, January 13, 2017

Building a green Internet

The report "Clicking Clean: Who is winning the race to build a green Internet?" (Greenpeace USA, 10 January 2017), identifies Apple as the leader in green computing. leadership spot for the third year in a row among platform operators. The report criticizes Amazon Web Services (AWS) for data centers in Virginia (USA) power by electricity from coal. 

One point the report makes is that more than half of global Internet traffic is now video streaming. This is an area, I suggest, where technology could make improvements. Improved compression algorithms can reduce the size of the streamed data. Also more intelligencer systems can detect the size of the display and therefore what resolution image is required. There is no point in streaming
8K ultra high definition television to a pocket size mobile device, or a tiny picture-in-picture window on a large TV. Lower resolution video will be indistinguishable to the viewer, saving bandwidth and energy.

For more on green computing, see my book "ICT Sustainability: Assessment and Strategies for a Low Carbon Future".

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