Kate's Comment

Thoughts on British ICT, energy & environment, cloud computing and security from Memset's MD

Why We Don’t Need Icelandic Data Centres

In summer, you don’t need to go somewhere cold. You just need to let your data centre run hot and spray some water into your dry air coolers. That way you can avoid the potential risk around your power supply and you don’t have to compromise your latency.

CRC down on the farm

Response to the CRC changes in the Autumn Statement Intellect UK (Britain’s high tech trade association) and I have been fighting hard to get the CRC scrapped over the last couple of years since it was a truly cretinous piece of legislation and they repeatedly ignored our recommendations during the many consultations. It is particularly damaging to data centres, which…

Energy of downloads

The music and movies industry are keen to tell us how enormously energy intensive downloading media can be. But just how much energy does get used when you download stuff from the Internet? I plugged some numbers from our data centre into my calculator to find out! The answer? About 5.9 Watt-hours per Megabyte, but as little as 1.8 Wh/MB for some configurations.

IaaS vs. PaaS vs. SaaS definition

One of the areas on which we reached clear agreement in the G-Cloud and App Store phase 2 was the definition the layers of the stack, infrastructure, platform and software, and their corresponding scalable, standardised counterparts: infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS). Pleasingly, our delinations were very similar to prior work from two decades ago by IBM, except that ours incorporate virtualisation.

ICT: Part of the solution to climate change

As the day-to-day use of ICT continues to rise, concern is growing about the carbon emissions indirectly caused by the manufacture of the electronics that litter our lives and the steady rise in the electricity required to power our personal devices and data centres. However, the debate should be less about ICT’s tiny contribution to global warming and more about how ICT can be used to reduce carbon emissions across society.

BCS video debate: IT policies and your green credentials

Back in February this year I tool part in one of a series of video debates on green IT hosted by the BCS as one of four “industry experts”. The topic was “IT policies and your green credentials”. Watch the video here…

Why the Carbon Reduction Commitment is bad for data centres

The Government’s Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) scheme aims to reduce absolute carbon dioxide emissions from large non-energy intensive organisations in both the public and private sector. In this article I discuss the impact of the CRC on data centres and why it will likely be counter-productive in the context of reducing carbon emissions.

BCS Data Centre Cost & Energy Simulator beta released

The British Computer Society’s Data Centre Specialist Group has released a beta version of their data centre cost and energy simulator to members of the specialist group. The simulator has come out of the Carbon Trust’s Low Carbon Collaboration initiative jointly funded by BCS and Romonet. Here are my first impressions from the preview a few weeks ago.

(Deprecated) The definition of cloud computing

This post has now been superseded by my updated

Sweat the desktops, replace the servers

People keep going around and around in circles on the debate of whether you should replace servers and desktops sooner rather than later when you take into account the improvements in energy efficiency in recent years combined with the embedded energy cost of manufacture of computers. So, I decided to get out my calculator and made some interesting conclusions. Materials,…