Everyday Computing, Features

Low-Energy Operation

By Dr. Lyndell St. Ville- ICT Consultant
By Dr. Lyndell St. Ville- ICT Consultant

IT is in good style that we celebrate Energy Awareness Month, with today Thursday 17th November being observed as Chifonnen Day, where energy conscious people wear un-ironed clothes to conserve energy. This brilliantly simple, effective, yet unorthodox campaign is exactly the sort of initiative that we should continue to expect from our leaders. Congratulations to the Ministry of Sustainable Developmeant, and in particular, the staff member who initiated the idea to wear clothes without ironing them as a symbolic gesture.

By conserving energy, we may save money from the reduced running cost. For a mobile computing device such as a laptop or a mobile phone, saving energy makes the device more appealing because it may operate longer on a single charge. If you are with your laptop or mobile device, you would probably appreciate the ability for the device to run for a longer time. To conserve battery power, an energy-aware computer system may activate power-saving features such as: slowing down the processor, blanking the monitor instead of using a screen saver, and dimming the brightness of the display. Mobile phones may even downgrade from a power-hungry 3G data connection to a regular 2G connection..

As a society, how other steps could be take to conserve energy and help control our bills? Here are a few ideas:
* Clearly advise motorists on the large cost, and feeble benefit, of speeding on our winding roads;
* Inform consumers of the savings achieved if boiling water by kettle, gas stove, or electric stove;
* Modify the dress code even further to reduce the need for air conditioning;
* Encourage passive cooling of buildings by using natural ventilation and landscaping;
* Provide incentives for new buildings to feature rooftop gardens to ward off the urban heat island effect;
* Defrost frozen items inside the fridge instead.

Within your own workspace, you may probably identify other opportunities for energy reduction, such as avoiding the near-freezing temperatures in offices and computer rooms. The success of Chifonnen Day, and other energy awareness initiatives, depends on our willingness to think outside the box, and do things differently. It is refreshing to think that we may be graduating from the confines of conventional thinking, and exploring ways to counter our energy costs.

To share your views, contact the author at: www.datashore.net or via The Voice.
About the Author
Dr.Lyndell St. Ville is an ICT Consultant based in Saint Lucia. His expertise includes systems analysis, design, and business intelligence.

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