a sustainable innovation and knowledge portal
Welcome to a website portal focused on Knowledge Sharing, Innovation and Sustainability practices.
"All people are connected through no more than 7 degrees of separation - and so it is with all information. Let us expand our collective knowledge by exploring those connections and build our teaching tools!"
Notable BLOG Posts
By Todd Rawlings
For many of us, writing and publishing our own book has been a life-long dream. Is it your dream?
Do you have a diary that you’ve written in for years?
Does it contain stories from your life and the lives of those around you that absolutely should be shared with the your family and friends, your community or even the entire world? A story of the struggles you overcame, of something unjust that occurred, or simply to share the joy of a life well-lived! Those around you deserve to be able to read what you’ve written down through the years; to share in your joy, sorrow, frustration and triumph.
In Stephen Covey’s book, First Things First, he talks about the fulfillment of four human needs, “To Live, To Love, To Learn and to Leave a Legacy”. You deserve to leave your legacy by writing and publishing your diaries into an eBook!
Or perhaps you have sketches and ideas for a book that you’ve been working at on and off for a long time. This is probably the start of a wonderful book that you could share with your kids, grand kids and others around the globe. But you may had hesitated actually writing the book because you either thought it was going to be too difficult to do, or you didn’t think any publisher would actually want to publish it.
This shouldn’t stop you at all! You have every right to complete your book in whatever tool you feel most comfortable working in. If you like to use a laptop running Windows and MS Word, but you only draw your pictures in pencil . . . great! This can work fine. Your pictures can be scanned in with a scanner or you can even take a digital photograph and use that (many digital camera’s today have decent close-up photo capability.) If you prefer to use a Apple Mac . . . no problem. If you type on a typewriter or even have hand-written notes . . . that too can work.
By Todd Rawlings
The Green Data Center - Greening Up your Data Center from the Inside Out.
Part 1 and 2 of this series dealt with server consolidation and access to green energy as ways to help reduce your company’s carbon footprint. This article gives you front-line knowledge about Data Center energy efficiency changes that really work and don’t require large capital investment. Every DC is different, so we’ll focus on general things that should work no matter how your DC is configured. One of the best places to start is getting a LEED assessment of your building(s). The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System™ is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction, and operation of high performance green buildings. This assessment will provide you with a baseline report with current and potential scores based on criteria like whether your air conditioning has an economizer mode. The bank where I worked had an assessment done for our DCs and it identified several quick and inexpensive changes:
- Monitor computer room humidity and program all AC units to operate in a way that prevents them from “fighting” each other (one unit humidifies while another dehumidifies).
- Measure the cycling of AC units within your cross connect and high density rooms so that only the units required for cooling the load are operating, leaving the remaining units in a standby mode. Be sure to switch “lead” and “backup” AC units on a regular basis to avoid over-stressing one unit.
- Conduct a raised floor survey to verify floor cut-outs and penetrations are plugged and hot-cold aisles are configured correctly; resolve as necessary. This will need to be monitored and changed as your DC configuration morphs over time.
- Check your server operating specs; you can often increase the raised floor ambient temperature and broaden your humidity set points.
- Replace 30W fluorescent bulbs with 25W and turn off lights where no work is being done.
- Utilize the power saving abilities on technology equipment. Many items don’t need to be running at full power 24/7, so have your staff look for opportunities (i.e., monitors can be allowed to turn off completely during non-use, new servers and power supplies will draw only the electricity they need).
By Todd Rawlings
Access to Renewably-Generated Electricity – A Key Criterion for your next Data Center
Electricity is the most important energy resource your Data Center (DC) will need for operations. At the company where I helped lead Green IT efforts, one of our typical DCs consumed $650,000 of electricity each year (more than 13 million kilowatts) and, like every DC; we needed a reliable source because you never want to be running off your uninterruptable power supplies (UPS) or diesel generators very long. Add in your goal to minimize greenhouse gas emissions and you begin to understand the challenge that finding the right location can pose.
By Todd Rawlings
When most IT managers think of DC efficiency, they jump right to the topics making the most headlines, “Strategic hot and cold server rows, high efficiency power supplies, LEED certification analysis and building retrofits, etc.” Yes, I’ll cover those things in some detail in Part 3, but one of the most effective and least costly ways to cut your total electricity usage (and therefore your company’s cabon footprint) is to reduce the overall number of servers you’re using and especially strive to phase out older model servers.
By Todd Rawlings
Back in 2007, before the great mortgage crisis, bank failures, acquisitions and the like, I worked for a leading U.S. bank with more than 50,000 employees, "Fair, Caring, Human, Dynamic and Driven" as their core values in an award-winning IT division with more than 2000 technology professionals nationwide.
...I knew taking a leadership role in this Green Tech program would enable me to have a more immediate positive impact. I could think of no better way to act locally than to help my own company become more sustainable . . . so I volunteered to get the Green Ideas and Green Technology Program started. Now I'm going to share our lessons learned so you can get your own program started faster and with more success!