The Dark Side of 'The Cloud'
Internet technology now uses more electrical power than any other American industry except for manufacturing. How much energy is wasted to keep your information available full time? On this archived edition of To the Point, is there a dark side to "The Cloud?" Also, the US Supreme Court will consider legalizing gay marriage, and the TSA is removing X-Ray scanners from major American airports. we find out why.
Banner image: Interior of Apple's data center in Maiden, North Carolina
Is Internet Technology Really 'Clean' Technology? ()
Internet companies tell computer users their data is stored on "The Cloud," and a lot of them worry it might be disturbed by the weather. In reality, "The Cloud" is million of severs in hundreds of warehouse-sized buildings that can use enough electricity to power a medium-sized town. The New York Times has created a furor by raising questions about how much energy is wasted to make so much information available 24/7. What about air pollution? Can the IT industry power unstoppable growth, or will it hit a brick wall?
- James Glanz: New York Times
- Andrew Blum: Wired magazine, @ajblum
- Jonathan Koomey: Stanford University, @jgkoomey
- Andy Lawrence: Uptime Institute
US Supreme Court to Consider Legalizing Gay Marriage ()
In this month's elections, several states legalized same-sex marriage. Advocates are looking at seven others to add to the growing number. But next week, the US Supreme Court is set to decide whether it should take up the issue. Andrew Koppelman is Professor of law at Northwestern University and the author of Same Sex, Different States: When Same Sex Marriages Cross State Lines.
TSA Scanners Warehoused ()
X-Ray body scanners have been controversial since the Transportation Security Administration began installing them in airports after the failed underwear bombing on Christmas Day, 2009. Now, the TSA is planning some changes that travelers -- and taxpayers -- will want to know about. Nearly half the scanners are going to be moved from America's biggest airports to smaller ones. But 90 others — worth $150,000 each -- will be left sitting in a Texas warehouse. Michael Grabell is a reporter for ProPublica.
Which Way L.A.? is made possible in part by the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation and the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation.
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