I've just read Greenpeace's report on the energy sources for serverfarms.
There's some interesting takeaways. Looks even more vital now to promote alternative entertainment outside of the "streaming services"!
Streaming is not green. Downloading it won't be much better, but will once you've rewatched it instead of something else!
@alcinnz I am recently pretty torn about that. From one perspective, I applaud the idea to download instead of streaming whole-heartedly. Then again, in example looking at friends running Synology boxes, QNAPs or large Linux servers at home, 24x7 with large disks to store all the stuff they downloaded even by now, I wonder whether we do have a "total" energy-wise look at this issue. 😐
(Plus I run mine entirely on electricity from renewables.)
I think the bigger problem is people reusing old hardware or standard desktop or gaming PCs as servers, as they generally aren't designed for low power consumption.
@mathew @alcinnz @z428 I remember reading a study about this wrt. laptops; it takes about seven years for a new, more energy efficient laptop to break even with the energy needed to produce it. Of course those numbers will be drastically different with different degrees of utilisation and power efficiency, but I think the energy efficiency effect is typically overestimated.
@michiel Yes.... that's an aspect I didn't even have in mind at the moment. But as always... things get more difficult, the closer you look. No real idea how to ever come to a meaningful conclusion here. Every "solution" seems to have pretty "interesting" drawbacks in other dimensions. 😐
@z428 @mathew @alcinnz Agreed. It's frustrating; I'd like to contribute something tangible to the reduction of fossil fuel use, and this *is* a field I'm at least familiar with, but it's clear that there are too many trade-offs to easily find big wins. Which doesn't mean that these big wins don't exist ...
Second best is to be vegan or vegetarian.
Reducing electricity consumption is pretty far down the list.
I'm a software engineer; my entire supposed value in the labor market comes from my ability to solve problems *once* and reuse the solution infinitely many times over.
If we investigate and educate each other about good choices in this problem space, we *can* have a significant impact as a profession.
@alcinnz @deejoe @mathew @z428 One of the most interesting anticapitalist figures I've seen on the fediverse is @emsenn, who, if I'm not mischaracterizing his position, doesn't so much *fight* capitalism as ignore it, working on the things and building the organisations he finds important as if it didn't exist.
This is less straightforward for us techy people wanting to do techy things, as many of the tools we used are built by a complex supply chain of capitalist infrastructure.
@deejoe Yeah, but that's what "specialization" seems to be all about... I'm pretty much a "techie" when it comes to computers and software but most details in most other fields of relevance are "out of sight" to me as well - and in quite some ways, I do expect experts to "do them right" because I either lack knowledge or time or both to dive into this in a meaningful way and to a meaningful degree. 😉
and thus arises the question about those expert in a field not your own: Whose expert are they? Yours, or someone elses?
"I appreciate SDF but it's a general-purpose server and the name doesn't make it obvious that it's about art." - Eugen Rochko