Cloud costing concept showing cloud icon on computer key. Cloud has been quite a news maker in the IT industry with increasing number of leading IT players opting for Cloud computing services. While most industrialists are increasing their profit margin with less manpower and better efficiency, environmentalist are frowning upon the energy consumed by the leading IT players to keep the service up and running.
An in-depth study conducted on energy sourcing and consumption by Greenpeace titled “How Clean is Your Cloud?” showed some alarming results. The study included data centers of some of the largest tech companies and investigated the data center deployments of 14 of the market leaders. Clean Energy Index, an evaluating system has been set by the International Environmental Organization with the main purpose being assessing & comparing energy linked footprints of cloud providers & their data centers.
Greenpeace has observed that there’s limited transparency with regards to electricity consumption by IT companies; this being the case despite the fact that there are various metrics for the purpose of measuring the consumption with the most prominent being PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness). As per Greenpeace, the data that depicts the dirty energy consumed (energy sourced from coal & nuclear power) & companies opting for clean source (renewable sources of energy) are poorly demarcated. Bearing this in mind, Greenpeace hopes that Clean Energy Index provides a clearer picture. The index considers recent investments & current energy supply related to these investments.
The most relevant findings of this index are:
- The 3 largest companies – Apple, Amazon & Microsoft are expanding rapidly but continue to behave irresponsibly towards the source of energy supply. As per reports, they rely heavily on dirty energy to keep their clouds up & running
- The most responsible companies were found to be Yahoo & Google, resorting to using renewable energy in their cloud expansion
- Facebook has also come on board with renewable energy. It has gone a step ahead and constructed a data center in Sweden that can be powered by renewable/ clean energy.
- The location for these data centers is also playing an important factor in the form of energy being consumed. Certain areas have a concentration of data centers around dirty energy sources. Its aggravating the environmental damage for that geography
- One of the first companies to give a detailed report of carbon intensity under the CUE (Carbon Utilization Effectiveness) standards is Akamai. As per Greenpeace, the rest of the companies chose to refrain from commenting about CUE.
- Though most IT companies have pitched cloud as a more “greener” option, they fail to back it up with valid reports supporting this claim.
Despite the picture not being perfect, there are encouraging signs that more & more IT companies are opting for renewable sources of energy, thus playing a positive role in shaping a better future for the earth.
Four individuals have reportedly sued professional network pioneer, LinkedIn saying that their accounts were hacked by the site for sending invitations to their friends.
Violation of California privacy laws and the federal wiretap law were the main allegations in the lawsuit filed by the plaintiffs.
It was alleged that there was no clarity about the site’s demand for user emails as it does not mention that it will use them for sending as many as three invitations.
A report in Huffington post says that Larry Russ, the attorney for the plaintiffs, argued that there have been a lot of complaints about LinkedIn emails in the past and this lawsuit is particularly aimed at the site’s unhealthy marketing practices which have drawn public outrage.
It is being said that the plaintiffs will seek class-action status, hoping that they will be defined as those members who had joined the site before May 15 2013 and whose identity was used by the site for the endorsement emails.
The report also quoted that the lawsuit claims that it is an unlawful practise to send advertising emails claiming the user to be an endorser for LinkedIn and should therefore be banned straight away.
Doug Madey, spokesperson for LinkedIn has on the other hand, dismissed this issue stating that his company is always bent upon being transparent regarding the protection and utilization of the data of its members. He also added that the company will fight the lawsuit which is completely meritless in its claims.
Thomas Bidaux, CEO online game consulting firm ICO partners is a well-regarded expert on online game consultant. In a recent interview with GDC Next, he explained why cloud computing, crowd funding & user-generated content are the possible future key areas for developing the next generation of games.
On cloud computing, Thomas Bidaux expressed high hopes for its current untapped potential. Social games, mobile games, and the new generation of online PC have already started the trends but much needs to be done to fully take advantage of cloud computing as a whole. One good point in this case is to make the user gaming profiles and storing the games in their cloud gaming account as well, making a seamless experience for the player. This will readily allow the gamer to worry less about its gaming console and only use it as a means to access his favourite game titles. Simultaneously, as the technical constrains change, new design model for the games evolve over a period of time.
For crowd funding, Thomas asserted that crowd funding has already brought some small changes to the industry. Studios have starting treating their essaywritingservice customers far more seriously as they are the potential contributors for their future projects. It forces the studios to think and understand the publishers’ problem. Certainly it leads to maturing of the computer game industry as we all learn of the different components that go into making a game and bringing it to market.
In user generated content, Bidaux said that there exists a acute need for game communities to initiate and evolve over a period of time by ample moderating the forums and chat discussions. Many new comers are turned off by blatant expressions of passionate “game experts” who frequently display outbursts of emotions leading to dismissal many new members. It is hence recommended that game communities are nurtured early, self-regulated and evolved gradually to maintain the popularity of the game.