Computing power 'should be relocated'
Computing power should be moved from personal desktop computers to company servers in remote outposts, one industry expert has said.
A Cambridge University computer expert said that the move would enable governments and businesses to take advantage of renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power.
Dr Andy Hopper said that computing power is unique in that it is much more manageable than other energy-consuming activities.
"There's something very special about computing power which is very different from heating your house," he told a conference at the Royal Society in London. "Computing power can be moved around the world and can be done anywhere in the world where the energy is available."
He said by shifting large-scale computer operations to specially-designed servers built in close proximity to wind farms, a global network of energy producers could be called upon.
"I think it is very interesting to contemplate a world with a smallish number of server farms, huge ones, which are deployed in places where the energy is produced," he added.
Business computing is responsible for 2.8m tonnes of carbon emissions each year, official government statistics suggest.
Article Date: 20 March 2008
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