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MMR: Can Solar Power Reduce the Cost of Gaming?

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July 31, 2006 1:01:09 PM

Energy costs are rising, and so is the energy consumption of your high-powered video game consoles and PCs. Is solar power the answer to reducing the high price of gaming? Also: the AMD-ATI merger; Germany bans Dead Rising without actually banning it; Rockstar Games gets off with a slap on the wrist and an Xbox 360 price cut may be on its way.

Speak out in the TwitchGuru reader survey!
July 31, 2006 2:30:43 PM

I completely agree with you about this: the rate at which Americans spend their energy ressources is not sustainable in the long term and the cost of energy is bound to increase in the next years. Energy is currently very cheap in the US (Americans are usually surprised when I tell them that in Belgium we pay more than $6 for a galon of petrol).

The Bush administration's current stance is counterproductive: ignoring the problem and hoping scientists will find a miracle solution before the situation becomes critical is simply irresponsible, especially since there are so many signs that the global warming is progressing (as an exemple, when the thames flood barrier was created it had to be closed once every 2 years, in 2004 it had to be closed 19 times in one year)

If americans don't get used to save energy by shuting down PCs and consoles at night or by looking at the fuel consumption of the car they intend to buy the are due for a rude awakening the day the sh*t hit the fan.

Saving energy is economical and the right think to do. If someone was offering a reasonably priced solution to use solar power or some othe renewable energy source to reduce the energy consuption of my PC or PS2 I would be very interested.
July 31, 2006 2:43:44 PM

Your liberal political views can STAY OUT of any articles posted on tomshardware.com for starters. I can't believe you used that article space to include your beliefs on what you think all Americans do. The only reason Europe is so "energy-conscious" is because their governments force energy prices to remain sky-high.

You mis-understood Cheney's energy policies obviously. Move to the UK if you want to conserve energy.

I bet $100 this post will silently disappear.
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July 31, 2006 2:46:40 PM

"But Northern Ireland's Secretary of State recently announced a plan that would require all new homes in the region to have renewable energy systems, including solar-power roof panels, by 2008."

And who do you think is going to pay for this? Why do you force people to pay for high-priced technology that is proven crap? That's not very nice to rob people of the freedom of home building.

Don't even think that the government is going to pay for it. Ireland has an outrageous income tax system so the people pay for it no matter what.
July 31, 2006 3:06:12 PM

"Americans think it's their Bush-given right to use as much gas and electricity as they want, whenever they want."

Actually, it’s our capitalism given right to use as much gas and electric energy as we want & can afford. So long as we can afford it, and we receive utility from the use of it, there’s no reason to stop using energy until the price outweighs the utility we receive from it. Econ 101 there.

But in all seriousness, the only issue that Tom’s Hardware should be dealing with is these inefficient consoles. Granted, to some people it may be worth the $10 of energy a year it costs to not have to set the clock of their Xbox 360 every time they turn it on. But to those who it isn’t worth it, a $5 power strip can solve the problem by producing a real power-off switch. A thousand dollar solar power system is the furthest thing from a real solution that I could possibly think of.

I second the notion that the authors leftist politics should stay out of that article unless they have a direct bearing on the issue at hand, in this case they don’t.
July 31, 2006 3:21:33 PM

Cheese, to answer your remarks (I am European by the way):

First it's not the European energy prices that are sky high, it's the american ones that are very low. Most european nation are not energy producers and have to buy oil and natural gaz from abroad, sometimes at premium prices. Also supply si not guaranteed, as last winter there was a natural gaz crisis when some eastern country stopped providing. America can afford low energy prices because they have a lot of ressources (a big rich country with low population par square mile, with oil and gaz) but this is NOT typical of the rest of the world (Europe and japan have
high average population density and little energy ressources). It is in the economic interest of the US to sell / consume a lot of energy, but their are a minority.

Second the reason governements force renewable energy system is because they kinda have to. If you are in a country without oil or natural gaz and that you main energy providers always risk to renege on your contracts and leave you without energy, you pretty much NEED to find a way to produce it from renewable (I could say that we could do it the american way and imagine that our energy provider have weapons of mass destruction and go "secure" our oil supply by sending our army, but that would be too mean, and I know most americans are very nice peoples that were decieved in this matter). In other words, they need to produce their energy or they risk being cut off. You can only buy energy if someone is willing to sell it to you at a reasonable price.

Third I would point out that when third world countries will need to face drought and floodings caused by global warming, who's gonna pay for the damage, the Americans and Europeans who used the "cheap energy" and benefited from it or the poor third world country? Who's roobing who?

Fourthy I think this article has it's place in Tom's Hardware because this is a global site. This may not be of so much interest to the US based readers but it is interesting for the Europeans ones at least, and probably the japanese ones also if there are any.
July 31, 2006 6:04:55 PM

I could take the approach of ripping the articles liberal points apart and providing a counter argument for each mis-aligned comment. But that would be a fruitless path taken by others already. Instead, let me say this:

I remember the days when I could come to Toms Hardware and not have to concern myself with the interjections of people's world scene political views. Rather, I could come, read about technology and technology-related news without someone interjecting a diatribe of over-spoken, lethargic liberal battle cries into their article. Thank you oh great master of regurgitations for once again voicing the liberal rhetoric that the 'popular' news streams already provides to us in an abundance that your drop is lost in. If I wanted to go read a liberal rag, I know the websites. If I wanted to read a technology article, I used to stop by Tom's.

If you want to tell me about the perceived waste and how that the over simplified statistics indicate as much an X amount of energy going to power consoles that are in a so called "low power" mode.... fine. Tell me about it. Tell me about how that compares to TVs, Amps, and other electronic devices, and the sum total that is captured by both. Tell me about how it compares to a 60Watt Light Bulb. Tell me how much energy we could potentially save if we actually powered it off, or if improvements could be made to the design to save energy when these devices are in a lower power state. Tell me about some alternative methods of powering these consoles and the costs associated with them and the technological challenges associated with building these powering devices such as the solar panel. All of the previous is great and can be the basis for an interesting and informative article for those people that are here for an informative article. But don't explain to me that in an article based on UK simplified statistics that the people in the USA are lazy and wasteful and drive big SUVs to McD's 1/4 of a mile away and have a President named Bush who doesn't do what you agree with. That in no way informs me about technology or anything original/insightful/new that I can't read somewhere else.

And for those two short sighted to see the point: I don't care what you believe or why you believe it with regard to politics/religion/global-warming/dogs-sleeping-with-cats/etc: In my opinion, that isn't why this website is here and it isn't what the informed reader base comes here to sample from the articles. Perhaps the writer should investigate time in a side job for another news based website where he can vent his political news aspirations BEFORE they turn in a technology article at Tom's... but that is not for me to decide. It is, however, my choice in where I spend my time reading information and insightful journalism regarding technology. If I can't get that with out all the worthless BS, then I'll start shopping else where for my daily dose.

For those people that agree with me and would like for technology to remain the scope and substance of the articles provide by Tom's, just simply do a reply to this post with the words "Agree" Perhaps, if enough people 'agree' people at Tom's will get the point.
July 31, 2006 6:50:50 PM

Agree... Whole Heartedly.

As an American, i took offense at this article, something that i hope tomshardware.com will take under consideration. Be realistic people. America is about capitalism, and money. If we can afford to do it, why not do it. From what I understand about Solar panels (yes, very limited) solar panels are not efficient, they just require too much area or space to power a household. And when you take into account lack of space, you can see there is a problem. There is no perfect cure for power, we need to except this and keep trying. Criticizing countries, citizens, or cultures is not going to help. Cars are just One major use for oil. There are …. Many…. More. I hope to never see an article like this again at Toms hardware. I think their should be a formal apology, and a reprimand of the writer. I DO not think he should be fired or anything of the sort. I’m sure he is passionate about what he believes, but he should go to a forum the is designated to similar subjects to post. We come here for information, and I think JohnTomFerg did an admiral job portraying what I think, and he did it like a gentleman. I find it curious that no one is concerned with offending Americans.
July 31, 2006 6:56:47 PM

Yes we sent in our army to secure our oil supplies, and thats the only reason we did it, we just happened to topple a genocidal dictator at the same time. Oh wait, gas keeps going up in price and very little oil is brought out of Iraq these days. We did not go to Iraq for oil, no matter how much people claim that it is not true.
July 31, 2006 7:57:41 PM

Quote:

For those people that agree with me and would like for technology to remain the scope and substance of the articles provide by Tom's, just simply do a reply to this post with the words "Agree" Perhaps, if enough people 'agree' people at Tom's will get the point.


Agreed
a b 4 Gaming
July 31, 2006 8:46:34 PM

"Agree"
Its a hardware site
July 31, 2006 8:47:37 PM

I must be one of those wierd Americans that thinks natural resources won't be available forever if we keep using as much fuel as we want.
After living in Southeast Asia for a few years, I saw how people can live well driving 100+ mpg. etc etc.
With these sensitive subjects, better to use careful wording to better focus any complaints to more specific people.

Anyway, I will personally like to see more "self sufficient" systems like a solar panel connected to a low-power drawing game. Even if this system costs the same as a normal system plus fuel, I will think the self sufficient system is just more elegant.
July 31, 2006 8:49:16 PM

Deleted by enewmen
July 31, 2006 9:03:42 PM

Lets make this an us vs them arguement. Americans against the world, aye?? Conservation will follow the market price of petroleum. If Americans cant afford the gas they will look to conserve, period. How this article ended up on a site about computer hardware is beyond me. The author obviously lives in CA which experiences rolling blackouts due to their mismanaged state government. Funny, most expensive state to live in cant provide their residents with reliable power.
July 31, 2006 11:37:14 PM

Hot damn, I was about to go to bed and then a political debate sprung up! Well, I'll avoid the political debate. What I will say is that the article you read was not a Tom's Hardware one, it was a TwitchGuru one. THG and Twitch are related, but their missions are completely different – THG is THG (need I explain it?) and TwitchGuru is devoted to gaming and the culture which surrounds it (to over simplify.) This is also an opinion piece, in which opinions tend to be expressed.

Don't ask me why this article is appearing on TwitchGuru, because as I say it's related to THG, but not THG. If you don't like that crapola, no worries as THG itself still posts at least one new article a day plus the techie stuff you get out of Mobility and DenGuru, on top of the news out of TG Daily. As for the writer being reprimanded for writing an opinion piece, well that'd be a bit silly. Though I don't necessarily agree with everything the young Mr Wright says (hell, we've got a whole damn series of articles about that) I don't mind him saying it. It gives us all reason to come here and converse. Or do battle, if you so prefer.
July 31, 2006 11:42:17 PM

Quote:
"But Northern Ireland's Secretary of State recently announced a plan that would require all new homes in the region to have renewable energy systems, including solar-power roof panels, by 2008."

And who do you think is going to pay for this? Why do you force people to pay for high-priced technology that is proven crap? That's not very nice to rob people of the freedom of home building.

Don't even think that the government is going to pay for it. Ireland has an outrageous income tax system so the people pay for it no matter what.


Dude, you can STFU, what's wrong with doing something better for energy technology? Right now there isnt something that can replace oil in its supply size, but why dont the US government do something about it? German government did. They finance a huge project to build wind-powered tubin on their land, and trust me, it's very efficient if they build it in massive numbers. All Americans do is condeming gas efficient technology like Hybrid says it's gay to drive a car like Yaris. I bet you if it's not because gas price is up the roof, not a single American would buy a Hybrid car because it's not fast enough. And not only German and other European countries are doing it, Japan is doing it as well. Their public transportation is top notch, the Shinkansen is something the US can dream about. Living here in Boston and riding those lame ass T train make me sick, slow and noisy. Being proud of your country is nothing wrong, but dont take it too radically, for we have a lot to learn from other countries.

US spent $500 billion a year for the army, but NYC right now is still in process to build a public Wi Fi network (Taipei finished it). Keeping peace in the world? Oh please, gimme a break. Protecting your country is fine, but do not bring democratic ideology and make everyone to follow it. 30 years ago it doesnt work in Vietnam, and it will not work now.
July 31, 2006 11:46:36 PM

Quote:
Agree... Whole Heartedly.

As an American, i took offense at this article, something that i hope tomshardware.com will take under consideration. Be realistic people. America is about capitalism, and money. If we can afford to do it, why not do it. From what I understand about Solar panels (yes, very limited) solar panels are not efficient, they just require too much area or space to power a household. And when you take into account lack of space, you can see there is a problem. There is no perfect cure for power, we need to except this and keep trying. Criticizing countries, citizens, or cultures is not going to help. Cars are just One major use for oil. There are …. Many…. More. I hope to never see an article like this again at Toms hardware. I think their should be a formal apology, and a reprimand of the writer. I DO not think he should be fired or anything of the sort. I’m sure he is passionate about what he believes, but he should go to a forum the is designated to similar subjects to post. We come here for information, and I think JohnTomFerg did an admiral job portraying what I think, and he did it like a gentleman. I find it curious that no one is concerned with offending Americans.


Actually, renewable energy is not just solar power. You can put solar panel in place like the Mojave desert for maximum utilization. I lived here in Boston, and when there is a project building the wind-powered tubin on the coast, I just dont understand why people go against it, say it damages the environement. Yea, right, like a oil drill didnt?
July 31, 2006 11:55:43 PM

Quote:
I must be one of those wierd Americans that thinks natural resources won't be available forever if we keep using as much fuel as we want.
After living in Southeast Asia for a few years, I saw how people can live well driving 100+ mpg. etc etc.
With these sensitive subjects, better to use careful wording to better focus any complaints to more specific people.

Anyway, I will personally like to see more "self sufficient" systems like a solar panel connected to a low-power drawing game. Even if this system costs the same as a normal system plus fuel, I will think the self sufficient system is just more elegant.


Amen to that, Im from Southeast Asia and see how wasteful some people live in the US can be. The thing I hate is that they live a wasteful lives, but when they do some petty charities, they cry about it too much. Doing something like Bill Gate and then you can talk about it.
August 1, 2006 2:32:56 AM

Quote:
Rockstar clearly violated the ESRB rating system and made a mockery of the video game industry's attempted self-regulation


So, despite the fact that you had to modify the game's code to get at the "offensive" content, it's all Rockstar's fault. If you hack a hole in the side of your food processor, bypassing the safety interlocks, and grind your fingers to mince you'd sue the manufacturer as well, I suspect. This isn't an "up, down, down, a, b" unlock, it's a code patch. You can argue that they should have completely removed all artwork etc. before distributing, but they did effectively block access to the content.
August 1, 2006 6:41:29 AM

Hey Rob, :D 

I wanted to support your editorial independence and applaud your judgement for writing this very mild alert to the energy consequences of gaming.

It's absolutely fantastic that Tom's Hardware and Twitch Guru both have a facility for readers to contribute to the discussion but I sincerely hope that your editorial credo will never fawn to the rabid outbursts of the dedicated lobbyists of the extreme right wing.

America(1) is a great nation, there's no doubting that. Therefore it's even more important for all individuals to stand for something - don't be a fence sitter, a bystander, or a mere observer. Because the ones who seek attention are the ones that get it. So we've all got to loudly make a stand lest we get drowned out by others.

(1) - referring to the United States of, obviously!
August 1, 2006 7:00:38 AM

Quote:
I remember the days when I could come to Toms Hardware and not have to concern myself with the interjections of people's world scene political views. Rather, I could come, read about technology and technology-related news without someone interjecting a diatribe of over-spoken, lethargic liberal battle cries into their article. Thank you oh great master of regurgitations for once again voicing the liberal rhetoric that the 'popular' news streams already provides to us in an abundance that your drop is lost in. If I wanted to go read a liberal rag, I know the websites. If I wanted to read a technology article, I used to stop by Tom's.

I admit that the tread got a bit too politic (partly my fault, I apologize).

However I consider that these kind of articles are appropriate for a technology site. Tom's Hardware is a global website (it's a .com, not .us or .eu), as such it is normal that they provide articles of global interest.

In Europe (and probably in Japan and California too) energy efficiency / conservation is becoming a major part of technology. It is true that I would have liked to see a bit more concrete content: can you replace you console PSU by a more efficient one, a comparison of the power drawn by different consoles, an estimate of the cost of running your console etc... but this is an oppinion piece.

On the PC side the energy efficiency of PSU, processors and graphic card is sometime benchmaked and taken into account when reviews are made and it is something I find usefull.

I understand well that for readers in some countries / states this is of little interest because power is cheap, please understand also that in some other countries / states this is a more important part of technology.
August 1, 2006 2:16:59 PM

Just to point out a few things.

1) Im not to keep of political discussions on technical sites. It just turns into flame wars and a constructive discussion breaks down quickly.

2) Its hardly a bushism, is more an Americanism or as another person put it a Capitalism because Americans had the same motivation when Clinton and other Liberal minded Presidents were in office. People have to keep something in mind, the President does not create law. So if our energy stance needs to change, it has to pass through congress. Congress makes law, Judges enforce law. The only control over law that the President has is his ability to veto things before they become law. Period. So if people dont like what hes doing, go to your congressman and make your opinion known. Even if he veto's something, the congress can pass it right by him with enough votes. Bringing Bush into the discussion is just an example of someone who doesnt like Bush and wants to blame the problem on someone else. I hate to tell you, but the number 1 reason people conserve or dont conserve is $$$$. If solar panels were cheep everyone would be using them, but there not so its not yet viable as a product. Personally I would love to see them build a windfarm off the east coast that runs from Massachusetts to the tip of florida to power the entire east cost. Why dont they, simple, $$$$.

3) I really get anoyed when people generalize ... Americans ... Europeans .. what ever. I am American, I turn off my lights, I drive a 4 cylinder car that gets 30+ miles to the gallon, I use the train whenever I can and I would love to install a solar panel on my house if I had the money to afford it. I just broke the sterotype. I bet there are people who live in the UK, dont give a crap about the cost of gas and drive and SUV, and leave their lights on when they leave the house everyday. Period.



Quote:
I completely agree with you about this: the rate at which Americans spend their energy ressources is not sustainable in the long term and the cost of energy is bound to increase in the next years. Energy is currently very cheap in the US (Americans are usually surprised when I tell them that in Belgium we pay more than $6 for a galon of petrol).

The Bush administration's current stance is counterproductive: ignoring the problem and hoping scientists will find a miracle solution before the situation becomes critical is simply irresponsible, especially since there are so many signs that the global warming is progressing (as an exemple, when the thames flood barrier was created it had to be closed once every 2 years, in 2004 it had to be closed 19 times in one year)

If americans don't get used to save energy by shuting down PCs and consoles at night or by looking at the fuel consumption of the car they intend to buy the are due for a rude awakening the day the sh*t hit the fan.

Saving energy is economical and the right think to do. If someone was offering a reasonably priced solution to use solar power or some othe renewable energy source to reduce the energy consuption of my PC or PS2 I would be very interested.
August 1, 2006 3:15:31 PM

Ok, Germany is like a state in the US, so your financial and economic issues is on a different scale than the US as a whole. If you want to make comparisons, use most of Europe.

So here is some stuff from just my home state of Massachusetts in the US.

Quote:


Dude, you can STFU, what's wrong with doing something better for energy technology? Right now there isnt something that can replace oil in its supply size, but why dont the US government do something about it? German government did. They finance a huge project to build wind-powered tubin on their land, and trust me, it's very efficient if they build it in massive numbers.



City of Hull in Massachusetts already has 3 operational wind-powered turbines, with one thats about 1/3 the size of your mega turbine your building in germany. Hull has had several of these turbines for years. There is a wind-powered turbine just south of boston, and there are plans to build a farm of them off the east coast of Massachusetts.

Quote:


All Americans do is condeming gas efficient technology like Hybrid says it's gay to drive a car like Yaris. I bet you if it's not because gas price is up the roof, not a single American would buy a Hybrid car because it's not fast enough.



Every major car manufactuer is currently selling 1-2 models of hybrid cars in the US. Most poeple that I know think they are cool and want them, just wish they were cheeper. The US government gives a tax break to make them affordable and it generally makes up the difference between the same model of the car that is not a hybrid.

Quote:

And not only German and other European countries are doing it, Japan is doing it as well. Their public transportation is top notch, the Shinkansen is something the US can dream about. Living here in Boston and riding those lame ass T train make me sick, slow and noisy. Being proud of your country is nothing wrong, but dont take it too radically, for we have a lot to learn from other countries.


The commuter system and rails in Boston were constructed 40-50 years if not longer before the Shinkansen was built. It is a lot easier to build a better rail system from the ground up with new technology than upgrading an existing line. A number of the rails running out of boston would have to be completely replaced to build high speed trains like those in Japan, you cant just toss a bullet train on any set of rails, or run it through highly settled areas. Most commutor lines in Mass cross major streets and run right through the center of towns. Secondly, Japan as a country which built the rail system, those in Boston were built by a single state in the US, not by our country but by Massachusetts which has a lot less $$$$ than the country of Japan.

Quote:

US spent $500 billion a year for the army, but NYC right now is still in process to build a public Wi Fi network (Taipei finished it). Keeping peace in the world? Oh please, gimme a break. Protecting your country is fine, but do not bring democratic ideology and make everyone to follow it. 30 years ago it doesnt work in Vietnam, and it will not work now.


1) The US spends 350-400 billion every year on its military, even before the war in iraq. Shrug, so what. Thats the federal goverments job. Build a military, and keep it up to date. Its not the governments place to provide public Wi Fi, that is for companies to do as a service. If the government puts in a public Wi Fi they are breaking free trade and effectively creating a situation where it pushes competion out of that market. Who is going to pay for Verizon if they get free Wi Fi. If governments could do it better than private enterprise, we can just look at the Big Dig in Boston as an example that this is not true.

2) So what if Taipei already has Wi Fi. Someone is always going to do it first. It doesnt always have to be a city in the US to do it. Maybe I dont want my taxes paying for Wi Fi in Boston where I am not going to use it since I live 30 min out of Boston.

3) Im not even goingt to comment on Vietnam, mostly because I thought that war was pretty stupid, but then again I only see it from the perspective of history.
August 1, 2006 3:59:24 PM

"Can Solar Power Reduce the Cost of Gaming?"

Solar Power is mentioned, but hardly analyzed.

The Cost of Gaming is analyzed further, but much of that analysis is not directed towards costs which Solar Power could alleviate.

Better title: "Will the US Suck all the Energy Out of the Globe? Oh, and It Mentions Solar Panels to Get All You Techie Readers of THG to Open It"

And, because this article was so short on actual technically interesting tidbits, one of the smartest uses of solar panels is to put them on window AC units. They run the most when the sun shines the brightest, and help reduce peak electric usage. Haven't seen any for sale yet, though.
August 1, 2006 5:08:35 PM

well Im gonna take both sides of the arguement. I agree that america wasts way too much of everything, we have to rent storage for all our stuff we never even use. I think something definatly needs to change about that. but its not entirly our fault

on just the energy thing, americans wast a lot but mainly because new inventions that will save energy just get coverd up by big corperations. has any one seen the myt engine? hears a link check it out, mytengine
it can get hundreds of miles to the gallon and it can run on just about any fule but it is probalby not gonna see the light of day because some rich big oil company is going to pay a few million to buy the paton and just bury it.

another example though I cant find a link is back in the mid 1900s like the 40s to the 60s or so this german guy made a carburator that could make any internal combustion engine run on any fule and get something between 100 and 200 mpg but some company paid off the guy for the copyrights and it vanished.

so you see stuff like that needs to stop happening for us all to reduce our energy consumption.
August 1, 2006 7:46:54 PM

Why does this article talk only about consoles as a source of energy consumption? Working backward from the figures in the article, a console that consumes 17.5Kwh/year consumes 2w/hour. Most common household devices with any electronics exhibit the same trickle consumption, and most people don't realize it. Almost every TV, VCR, stereo, answering machine, coffee maker, stove, or any other device that has a clock, stores a setting, or has any number of other features constantly consumes electricity, and typically at a greater rate than 2w/hr. The power strip idea isn't bad, but if you buy a high quality power strip which displays fault/ground it also consumes electricity just to have it plugged in to the wall.

Mandating energy efficiency by law works very poorly, and European countries know this which is why they add a behavior modifying tax. Wealthy people in Europe still drive Ferraris that get 5MPG, and honestly $3/gallon gas hasn't slowed down consumption in the US like everyone thought it would. Even at $3/gallon, hybrid drivetrains are still cost inefficient, just like solar panels. However, at $3/gallon, biodiesel and ethanol begin to be viable competitors and the increased cost of energy will slowly lead to modified behavior.

Solar panels have only two drawbacks, first is very high initial cost, and second is the need for direct sunlight. Modern crystaline solar cells have good efficiency, and a relatively small array can power even a large energy inefficient house, but they require a huge amount of energy to produce. Typically it takes 7 years for a solar panel to create all of the energy required to build that panel, so a crude analogy is that you will have to pay the price of 7 years of that panel's production up front, then get energy for free for the life of the device.

Solar panels are otherwise extremely reliable and last for decades. Name another product that you can buy over the internet that comes with a 25 year warrantee.

Price pressure is the best way to encourage changes in behavior, and with the current rate of worldwide consumption that price pressure will come soon enough. Inflamatory articles about how consoles are massive wasters of electricity are ridiculous. If this article was trying to inform consumers about the risks of devices that constantly consume power it wouldn't have gone on this foolish rant.

A final point for all of those Europeans comparing fuel economy, a UK gallon is 1.25x a US gallon, so 32 US MPG is 40 UK MPG, or that Prius with 56 US MPG is 70 UK MPG. Also, fuel ratings in the UK measure peak octane and in the US they measure average octane, so 95 UK octane is 87 US octane.
August 1, 2006 7:52:52 PM

everyone needs to conserve gas and energy or were jus gonna screw ourselves in the end, obvious answer, dosnt matter repubs or liberals energy conservation soething that both govt systems should prioritise, im in canada, and things here should be the same
August 2, 2006 3:11:32 AM

Agreed.

I drive a civic and am tremendously interested interested in energy conservation. I'm also sick of my country being used as a whipping post for for every journalist/politician who thinks they can get some mileage out of it.

I'm well traveled, and I've often seen the ugly side of the places I've visited - you think I (or others) can't pull off a seething, unfair stereotype denigrating the nationality of most everyone else visiting this forum? I wouldn't spend my day doing something in such poor taste.

Really, we hear INCESSANTLY day after day after day people preach about why the US is to blame for [fill in blank]. If I want to fill the remainder of my day with more of the same, I'll buy the book. If I want a break from the depressing onslaught, you'd think I'd be able to get it at a tech site.
August 2, 2006 2:16:04 PM

Quote:
tbh i belive you when you say inventions like that are buried. alot of them may be put down to extensive R&D and testing. it is a shame that people only think of their wallets and not benefitting mankind or indeed the earth and everything on it.


I'll agree that many things are not mass produced because of the high cost of R&D but inventions are not the only thing that is being highly suppressed in this country. I cant find any links to storys about this, and even if I could it probably wouldnt be to any known source so just take this as my 2 cents worth.

A doctor some time ago found a cure for brest cancer, a simple herb and some simple treatment, he had a 100 percent cure rate for brest cancer. wanna guess what happened to him, the FDA came in and arrested him and threw him in jail, and distroyed all his research and documentation. the reason for this is because the FDA is judge jury and exicutioner when it comes to foods and drugs, they said that the doctor was more or less dealing drugs (because this herb had not been FDA approved kinda like pot) The FDA arrested him tried him and put him in jail for curing brest cancer. how F'ing stupid is that!!?

oh and by the way this is a law made by the FDA "only a drug (something that is FDA approved) can cure prevent or treat a desiese" so according to the FDA only Viagra can give you a boner when you have ED not a hot chick, If a doctor claimed that a hot chick could cure you or even help you with ED he is going to jail.
August 7, 2006 6:30:46 AM

Quote:
has any one seen the myt engine? hears a link check it out, mytengine
it can get hundreds of miles to the gallon and it can run on just about any fule but it is probalby not gonna see the light of day because some rich big oil company is going to pay a few million to buy the paton and just bury it.



Reminds me of a Wankel (rotary) engine, just much, much, much, much, more fuel efficient. Guaranteed you'll never see it in the U.S. (or Australia); the car companies here are too busy producing oversized shite (6 litre 300kw Chevrolet Gen IV, for example. I can buy a Japanese car that's over 10 years old, recondition the engine, and make that power with less weight and more reliabilty, and have the change to do it again).

Quote:
Really, we hear INCESSANTLY day after day after day people preach about why the US is to blame for [fill in blank]. If I want to fill the remainder of my day with more of the same, I'll buy the book. If I want a break from the depressing onslaught, you'd think I'd be able to get it at a tech site.


I'm not giving you crap, but just look at your president and the rest of the people who run the United States. Conservative? Only when it comes to gay marriages/abortions/<insert controversial topic here>. Not only that, but when you have people like "cheese" who, although they don't realize it, are representing your country, then you should probably be concerned.

So, it's basically just like Australia then (another country who has yet to sign the Kyoto Protocol), except Australia has me representing them. Woe for us :lol: 

To all: As for solar power not being viable in the U.S.? Death Valley should ring a bell. Lots of reliable sun, low population... lots of reliable sun (did I mention there was lots of reliable sun?).

Oh yeah, where I live solar power is viable not only because it gets f*ck'n hot in summer (think 40C+, and even though it's the middle of winter now there's no clouds in the sky today or have been for the past few weeks), but also because you are able to sell any unused electricity that you have generated back to the electricity company.
August 7, 2006 7:21:58 AM

Quote:
Yes we sent in our army to secure our oil supplies, and thats the only reason we did it, we just happened to topple a genocidal dictator at the same time. Oh wait, gas keeps going up in price and very little oil is brought out of Iraq these days. We did not go to Iraq for oil, no matter how much people claim that it is not true.


Just like how Bush sent in an army to topple a supposedly more dangerous threat, Kim Jong Ill of North Korea.

Oh wait, there's no troops going to North Korea to oust the evil Kim Jong Ill. There's no oil in North Korea either.

How much do you think Iraq is costing the United States per month? Think BILLIONS. Do you really think that the U.S. government is going to stage an unprofitable war in a country just to get rid of a dictator?

Now, shall I ask you what the cost is in human lives? How many people (not just Americans) have died? Wasn't the U.S. government supposed to be chasing Osama Bin Laden? Considering he requires dialysis 3 times a week you could be forgiven for thinking that he is a pretty easy target, not to mention the (compared to U.S. miltary's) resources he has at his disposal.

I am astounded that someone would be so gullible to believe that the U.S. government sent troops to Iraq for the sole purpose of removing a dictator.

P.S. Before anyone replies with an outcry of "die, you anti-American hippy!", re-read the post and make sure that I'm anti-American, and not just anti-U.S. foreign policy...
August 8, 2006 6:33:33 PM

Quote:
"But Northern Ireland's Secretary of State recently announced a plan that would require all new homes in the region to have renewable energy systems, including solar-power roof panels, by 2008."

(snip)

Ireland has an outrageous income tax system so the people pay for it no matter what.


Ireland (aka Republic of Ireland, or Eire) is not the same as Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland is a grand duchy of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and so is governed by the UK's tax rules, not Eire's.

Muppet.
August 8, 2006 7:01:35 PM

Quote:
"But Northern Ireland's Secretary of State recently announced a plan that would require all new homes in the region to have renewable energy systems, including solar-power roof panels, by 2008."

(snip)

Ireland has an outrageous income tax system so the people pay for it no matter what.


:roll:

Geography and political science 101:

"Ireland" is used refer to either:
1. the geographic landmass comprising Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland (Eire)
2. the Republic of Ireland

In the context of your post (referring to tax laws) it is clear you are referring in this case to the nation state and not the geographical area.

Having ascertained that, I should point out to you that Northern Ireland is not governed by Eire. Northern Ireland is a province of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and so is governed by UK tax law (subject to some local legislation).

So why has Ireland's tax regime got anything to do with energy policy in Northern Ireland?

It's no wonder people think that Americans don't know anything about geography.

Muppet.
August 9, 2006 12:17:29 AM

Quote:
lol, australia does have that big part of it called the outback where no one lives and it never rains. i heard a rumour that you don't even have to pay for land in some parts, they give it away free. doubt thats true.


Ah the outback. If the heat or the wildlife doesn't kill you then the locals probably will.

Anyway, Australia's population just hit 20million a few years ago, so I don't think solar is currently financially viable for Australian governments. Most outback towns and more and more houses have/are becoming solar power/ed anyway.

I found this on the ABC (government funded TV station) website:

"South Australian Government announced, or introduced legislation which requires 20 per cent of the State's electricity to be generated by renewable energy within eight years"

About 100kms from where I live (Adelaide) we have a wind farm, and (crap, can't remember the district) another council here wants to build windmills for electricity generation. However, they want to build them near a golf course, and a minority of people have had a bitch that "it won't look good". Pathetic, I know. It's like buying a Mac instead of a PC :lol: 

Free land? Haven't heard of it. However, it's so cheap you may as well get it for free. The largest private property here is slightly larger than The United Kingdom; the owner uses a helicopter to get around his property.
August 9, 2006 12:30:39 AM

Weird - my post disappeared and then reappeared after I reposted. 8O
August 12, 2006 12:06:21 AM

Bah those of you who are getting offended are just being oversensitive. Aside from calling us "wasteful hogs" (and he includes himself), I fail to see anything particularly offensive towards americans. There is no such thing as being "wasteful" if you are spending your money on it, and if North American energy costs are low enough to warrant it, then by all means.

Dick Cheney is correct in saying that conservation is not sufficient on its own. In the long run, it's not going to make a very large difference. It seems a lot of you have become so accustomed to using money, you've forgotten its very purpose. Why do we even have currency? Well to make a long-story short, I'm just going to say that the very fact that money exists will keep us from using up all our energy supplies. Some other poster earlier mentioned that once costs of our primary sources of energy rise to the point which makes other sources viable, then it will naturally occur; he is correct. We have cheap abundant energy, and we have more expensive alternatives, also known as backstop technology. As this primary source of energy is consumed and becomes rare (take oil for instance), the price will naturally increase and other forms will be taken up. The hybrid for instance is not currently widely used, not because of its speed. It's because the initial price increases by another $5000 to $10000 over it, and unless the price of gasoline truly warrants that increase, not many people will purchase one. This will change though, as government incentives are encouraging consumers to purchase them, and manufacturers to create them. Higher demand will lead to more efficient production and lower prices, so just because right now the hybrid isn't terribly popular is not indicative of our behavior.

Anyways people just need to knock it off with their idealogical views. I know saving seems so easy because all the mass propaganda gives you one simple solution with which to "do your part" (zomg ride your bike to work) and some simpletons actually think that's all there is to it, but saving natural resources is actually tied in with higher prices, so we need to find a fine-balance between the future and the present. Just don't be fixated by what is immediately in front of you, and try to realize that there is a much bigger world out there behind the scenes that you may not be aware of. FYI, gasoline is but a minor part of oil consumption, and the vast majority of it is used in the industrial sector. Change that up and you'll see a massive amount of stagflation which will destroy your standard of living (imagine massive unemployment, being underpaid if you're lucky enough to have work, WHILE having to pay higher prices for your food), so don't take this whole conservation bit so lightly.
August 12, 2006 2:46:06 AM

Weird, mine vanished too.
August 13, 2006 4:05:43 AM

Looks like there's another missing post.
August 13, 2006 4:18:02 AM

Quote:
i never thought someone believed all that crap and would actually say anyone in the current u.s admin knew what they are talking about.

get your head out of your ass you capitalist sock puppet. seriously all that stuff about prices regulating human society are made up by people wanting to justify their way of life. it is wrong. you are just not wanting to change how you live and that is all. if you believe any of that rubbish you just spouted i pity you i really do.


"Capitalist sock puppet"? I'm an economist, not a political supporter. Just because you disagree with the governing party doesn't mean every single thing they say is false. If you really want to drag politics into this, you know what, I think Bush and his government are a bunch of morons too, but that doesn't mean that if they say 1+1=2 I'm obliged to say they're wrong.

That "rubbish" I just spouted is the foundation of our economy. Do you actually have any proof that I'm wrong, or are you just talking out of your ass like another common dumbass? Look what happened in the 70's when the oil prices shot up suddenly. Interest rates shot up, loans were defaulted on, banks collapsed, stagflation. But whatever, if you want to believe that we can all hold hands, sing Kumbaya, and save the world with doing nothing more than sticking solar panels on our video games, then you're entitled to do so, but please know that there are millions of other people out there, and while you think you're the smartest person around, a lot of people are also looking for viable solutions. And ones that make sense.

Anyways, I challenge you to actually back up your statements, because all you're doing right now is showing how much of an uneducated ignoramus you are.
August 13, 2006 4:18:36 AM

Posting to get the previous post to appear.
!