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Power to change: the environmental impact of computing

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 9-Jun-2009 18:34

Earlier this week I posted about HP's Power to Change campaign in our Geekzone news section. This morning (5am!) a group of bloggers attended a conference call with the HP team in the U.S. responsible for this campaign and a communications channel was open that allows us to provide feedback to the team.

One of the initiatives of this campaign is a Adobe AIR-based (read: platform independent) widget that can run while you are logged in and will monitor your PC usage in terms of hours. You can then send daily feedback in terms of how many hours your PC is running every day - and in return the widget shows some update statistics in terms of environmental impact of changes, including the amount of energy saved and carbon emissions reduced.

A 2004 study for example shows that 64% of business desktop users and 24% of laptop users do not switch off their PCs at the end of the days.

HP employees are involved in this program using intranet to distribute information, updating country websites to reflect the program, distributing stickers, internal videos, and more. HP is also running a Power to Change blog.

So what's in here for us?

First I invite you to download the Power to Change widget.

Then check some of these resources:

• Main resource page on HP environmental initiatives:  www.hp.com/go/environment
• Energy tips for computing: www.hp.com/hpinfo/globalcitizenship/environment/education/energytips.html
• Environmental videos: www.hp.com/hpinfo/globalcitizenship/environment/education/eco-videos.html

And last post here what you or your company are doing to change the way you use computing to reduce the environmental impact. Things like distributing internal information, asking employees to turn off their PCs when leaving the office, using virtual environments to run multiple servers, going through technology refreshes replacing old equipments with modern version, etc.

You can also post suggestions here (or in our forum discussion). Everything you post here I am happy to relay back to HP.

So, what are you doing?







Register for .Net Code Camp Wellington now

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 9-Jun-2009 08:22

This weekend we have the .Net Code Camp in Wellington. The event is happening 13 - 14 June 2009, 9am to 5pm in the Whitireia Community Polytechnic, Porirua.

This is a cool gathering for .Net developers in New Zealand. Topics inlcude "ASP.NET MVC", "Building Composite Solutions with Microsoft Products", "Code Contracts", "Object Relational Mapping","Programming for the Microsoft Sync Framework", "What's Happening in .NET Languages" and "Zero to Practical Silverlight in 60 Minutes".

Another new topic this year is the "Introduction to iPhone Development" session.





Have a Telecom voucher? Check Vodafone...

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 6-Jun-2009 10:33

I just saw a Google Ad on Geekzone telling readers that Vodafone New Zealand is honouring Telecom's XT Network vouchers (conditions apply of course):

Got a Telecom voucher for $299? The Vodafone Online Shop is happy to accept these when you switch to Vodafone and sign up for a 24 month Talker or TXTer plan. We'll give you $299 off the standard RRP price of any mobile (excluding the iPhone). Naturally, some terms and conditions apply, see below for details.


More details on Vodafone XT Voucher page.



Ffunnell on TV3

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 6-Jun-2009 08:43

Some of you have known about Ffunnell, an advertising network comprising New Zealand's largest independent publishers - Geekzone, Kiwiblog, PublicAddress, Pundit, Scoop, Throng...

Scoop's Alastair Thompson was on TV3 yesterday explaining a bit of Ffunnell. Click the image to see the video on Scoop.








Telecommunications Summit 2009

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 3-Jun-2009 10:57

Just got an invitation to attend the Telecommunication Summit, in Auckland 23rd and 24th June 2009.

Looking forward to meeting some of you there.



Advertising on line is more effective than cinema?

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 2-Jun-2009 09:57

Last weekend we decided to go see a movie. The movie was scheduled for 2:30pm, but the theatre was closed for cleaning until 2:35pm...

We started walking in to take our seats - we were the first couple in - and the pre-roll ads were... rolling already. Cadbury Eyebrows was just at its last ten seconds or so...

The cinema had to show the ads, even if no one was there to actually watch them.

And that made me think how companies still put money into some advertisers that don't give a damn to their contractual obligations - like this cinema screening an at to no one in particular, but still counting the "impression".

Some still wonder why advertising money is flowing from newspapers, cinema and TV to on-line, where ad delivery and responses can be measured with ease. It just makes more sense.



President Obama supports net neutrality

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 31-May-2009 10:06

President Obama said yesterday briefed the U.S. media yesterday on why they need to improve the U.S cyber security. At one point he said:

Let me also be clear about what we will not do.  Our pursuit of cybersecurity will not -- I repeat, will not include -- monitoring private sector networks or Internet traffic.  We will preserve and protect the personal privacy and civil liberties that we cherish as Americans.  Indeed, I remain firmly committed to net neutrality so we can keep the Internet as it should be -- open and free.


Here is the video (transcript available):






Want to attend the I.T. Rockstar finale? Read on

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 29-May-2009 14:26

The I.T. Rockstar finale is here i Wellington, Thursday 4th June at The Loaded Hog Waterfront.If you want an invite to attend the big party, contact megansmith@920.co.nz for your FREE ticket!

I will be there as one of the judges, wearing my black I.T. Rockstart t-shirt:



Party on!



Ivy Worldwide logo contest: US$2500, HP Mini, Wacom tablet

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 29-May-2009 09:03

A couple of friends in America run a marketing agency and have just renamed the company Ivy Worldwide. They are running a logo contest with some good prizes: US$ 2,500 cash, HP Mini laptop, Wacom tablet for the top three designs.

Ivy Worldwide runs some great programs bringing bloggers and tech writers together with some big companies - it was through them that I got to engage with brand names such as HP, AMD, AT&T and others.

To get going visit Ivy Worldwide to check the contest rules, and work on a cool logo design for them...



Vodafone 3G Guy competition: what's wrong with this picture?

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 25-May-2009 09:37

Vodafone is running the Find 3G Guy competition to promote their 3G services - there's only one thing that doesn't quite work well here: 3G Guy is using a Dell Inspiron Mini 9 with built-in 3G, which currently only works on Vodafone 3G when used in the main centres. Have you stopped to think a bit why is he visiting only Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin?



The problem is Vodafone's mix of WCDMA 2100 MHz in the main centres and WCDMA 900 MHz elsewhere doesn't go well with the main prize. The Dell Inspiron Mini 9 is listed on Vodafone's own website as "2100 MHz WCDMA" (it's actually 850/2100MHz) meaning it won't work on 3G outside the main cities.

Yes you got it right: when taking in account 3G coverage the Dell Inspiron Mini 9 Vodafone is giving away would work better on a competitor's WCDMA 850 MHz network than on Vodafone's own.

This is the same embarrasing situation they currently have with their Apple iPhone 3G offer.

I know more and more devices will be coming out with 900/2100 MHz WCDMA. But reality is Vodafone can't just replace their current 900MHz GSM gear with 900 MHz WCDMA gear without impacting coverage for their customers still using 2G handsets - which I would think are still in the millions now.

When it comes to 3G wars, the advantage is on Telecom's XT Network side for now. They were able to deploy a completely new WCDMA 850 MHz network that won't conflict with their existing CDMA 800 MHz service - and with the same coverage, something Vodafone can't match on a single network.

People will be able to move to the new network as they wish and there's a clear target for that - 2012. And there are devices out there working on this band already (thanks to Telstra in Australia and AT&T Wireless in the U.S. who deployed this type of network nationwide creating the market).

The rumours are that a new Dell with a 900/2100 MHz card is in the works and should be out soon. Like the Apple iPhone rumours we have to wait and see. Meanwhile some link love to the Vodafone 3G Guy and the ripoff site 3G Guy Goes Rural.

Update: It seems some people didn't like Vodafone asking for their followers to spam Twitter to be in to win a notebook.



freitasm's profile

Mauricio Freitas
Wellington
New Zealand


I live in New Zealand and my interests include mobile devices, good books, movies and food of course! 

I work for Intergen and I'm also the Geekzone admin. On Geekzone we publish news, reviews and articles on technology topics. The site also has some busy forums.

Subscribe now to my blog RSS feed or the Geekzone RSS feed.

If you want to contact me, please use this page or email me freitasm@geekzone.co.nz. Note this email is not for technical support. I don't give technical support. You can use our Geekzone Forums for community discussions on technical issues.

Here's is my full disclosure post.

If you'd like to help me keep Geekzone going, please use this Geekzone Amazon affiliate link when placing any orders on Amazon.



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