Linked by Howard Fosdick on Wed 7th Jul 2010 16:58 UTC
Editorial Last month, I described how the computer industry encourages planned obsolescence in order to sell more product. This business model exacerbates the problem of computer disposal because it artificially shortens computer lifespans. This increases production and, ultimately, the numbers requiring disposal. One result is that e-waste -- electronics waste -- is one now one of our most pressing environmental challenges. Updated
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RE[2]: Old computers to charity
by lordepox on Wed 7th Jul 2010 20:29 UTC in reply to "RE: Old computers to charity"
lordepox
Member since:
2010-04-14

In a processor to processor test a Nahalem does use more power than a P3, but what I was referring to (and maybe I wasn't specific enough) was P2 complete systems. Today's hard drives and other internals have better power management features than before. A complete system now can run a web browser at idle for under 20 watts, a P2 or P3 system would be atleast 75 watts for the same given performance. Yes, the issue of software licensing can come into play, but if you use open source software that is eliminated. Where I live electricity costs $0.45 a kWh, so if your only paying $0.09 it may be different. I've replaced entire racks of systems and saved more money in electric in one year than the new machines costs. It all depends on your perspective and situation. If you were in the Sahara desert, than 100 watts is a lot, and that 10 watt netbook looks rather nice to run off solar.

Reply Parent Score: 1

umccullough Member since:
2006-01-26

Where I live electricity costs $0.45 a kWh, so if your only paying $0.09 it may be different. I've replaced entire racks of systems and saved more money in electric in one year than the new machines costs. It all depends on your perspective and situation. If you were in the Sahara desert, than 100 watts is a lot, and that 10 watt netbook looks rather nice to run off solar.


Indeed, and if you have many machines running 24x7 - as I said before, it would make a difference. As a residential PG&E customer, who often hits Tier 5 above Baseline (which is $0.31/kWh), I understand the pain of high power bills as well, and I have replaced several older rack-mounted machines with lower powered Atom-based machines for that very reason.

But, that doesn't mean that a PII/III machine used for an hour of email or Facebook each day is a bad thing - and I suspect most home users actually shut their computers off after using them rather than relying on power management features. And even an older PIII ATX machine will go to sleep with power management enabled.

In the grand scheme of things, recycling older machines by putting Linux on them, and giving them to people who can't otherwise afford a $300 computer sure seems like a good idea to me - especially if they only use them for word processing and school homework.

Reply Parent Score: 3

helf Member since:
2005-07-06

It's totally worth it for the people that couldn't otherwise afford a computer.

I've done the same thing with Pentium II/III/IV computers. Cleaned then up, install Ubuntu or whatever OS is best suiting the specs of the computer and given them to needy families.

Reply Parent Score: 2