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Turning daisies into dollars - the realities of Green Computing

Let's get ready to rumble

The Great Debate Talk of "greening" a datacenter or desktop seems a tad insane. After all, it's not like you're popping daisy stems into the holes of a raised floor. Instead, you're really talking about hunks of metal stuffed with often toxic chemicals, and these hunks of metal happen to have better performance per watt characteristics than last year's hardware.

It's understandable that the vendors want to grab onto "greening" language. They sense an opportunity to move new gear, while also enjoying the public relations benefits of being seen as environment aware.

The good news for customers is that all of this "greening" fluff has the potential to result in better actual products, including both data center and desktop systems. We're looking to explore this potential with you during our first Green Debate next week.

Why bother traipsing around a conference center when you can get the lowdown on Green Computing from the comfort of your well-padded, familiar chair? That's right. Our Green Debate takes place in the wondrous, virtual world that is the internet.

On Feb. 27, we'll have Register editor Ashlee Vance kick off the Green Debate and then follow-on with hardcore slide action. Dale Vile, an analyst at Freeform Dynamics, will discuss the feedback we've amassed from thousands of readers on your green computing concerns. We'll also hear from the event's gracious sponsors Intel, Dell and Computer Aid International on specific ways that customers can improve the power efficiency of their data centers and desktops. We've got sessions on recycling and how to get the most bang for your buck on the green front as well.

We've taken special care to provide for a lively forum with the Green Debate. The presentations have been vetted, and we've kept them short - 15 minutes. That leaves another 15 minutes for questions that you can submit online or via email. And we want lots of hard-hitting questions. Let's work together to keep the vendors honest and to get the most out of their knowledge.

To pull this off in a proper fashion, we need as many people online as possible, and we need you angry or at least inquisitive. If, however, you miss the actual event, you're in luck. We'll make the day's proceedings available online, so you can listen to the whole shebang or check in on the sessions that seem more appropriate for your agenda.

The big plan here is to move away from the "greening" cruft and help you form a solid green computing plan. Chances are that your boss, co-workers and/or customers will want to know how you plan to rollout greener gear in the coming years and how this gear can save you money. Help us, help you. ®

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