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Showing posts from November, 2008

The Cloud – Provider Failure Modes

In The Cloud - Outsourcing Moved up the Stack[1] I compared the outsourcing that we do routinely (wide area networks) with the outsourcing of the higher layers of the application stack (processor, memory, storage). Conceptually they are similar:
In both cases you’ve entrusted your bits to someone else, you’ve shared physical and logical resources with others, you’ve disassociated physical devices (circuits or servers) from logical devices (virtual circuits, virtual severs), and in exchange for what is hopefully better, faster, cheaper service, you give up visibility, manageability and control to a provider. There are differences though. In the case of networking, your cloud provider is only entrusted with your bits for the time it takes for those bits to cross the providers network, and the loss of a few bits is not catastrophic. For providers of higher layer services, the bits are entrusted to the provider for the life of the bits, and the loss of a few bits is a major problem. The…

Janke’s Official 2009 Technology Predictions

I’ll take Anton’s bait.Here they are:Prediction 1: The rate of adoption of IPV6 will greatly accelerate. Estimates of the final shutdown date for the last v4 global route will be moved up from ‘when hell freezes over’ to ‘long after I’m retired’, placing the problem right next to the Year 2038 Unix timestamp problem on CTO’s priority lists.Prediction 2: Gadget freaks will continue to search for the holy grail of multifunction all-in-one gadgets. They will continue to be disappointed. Prediction 3: Apple will announce a new product. The product will be generate a media frenzy. Apple fans will crash servers looking for the latest product leaks or fuzzy prototype pics, and arguing via blog comments the merits of the features the product may or may not have. Unfortunately the product will be missing cut and paste.Prediction 4: Hardware and network vendors will continue making faster and cheaper bits at a rate that matches Moore's law. Software will continue to bloat at a rate just sli…

The Power Consumption of Home Electronics

I learned something last week. Xbox and Playstation Game consoles are pathetically bad at energy consumption. The Wii doesn’t suck (power) quite as badly.

The Data:

The Natural Resources Defense Council did an interesting study[1] of game consoles and attempted to estimate annual energy usage and cost.

The good part:

Ouch. Unlike half watt wall warts, a hundred and some odd watts might actually show up on your monthly electric bill. And from what NRDC can tell, the game consoles are not real good at powering themselves off when unused, which makes the problem worse.

This is really discouraging. The idea that energy consuming devices should automatically drop themselves down into a low-power state when idle isn’t new, yet we continue to build (and buy) devices with poor power management. I suspect that part of the problem is that there isn’t sufficient information available to consumers at the time of purchase to make a rational ‘green’ decision. Unlike refrigerators, clothes washers, an…