Skip to main content

The Business Case and Methods for the Green Data Centre

"Green IT" is a hot topic at the moment. In the UK, data centres contribute nearly 2% of the country's CO2 emissions, a figure which is similar to that of the much-vilified airline sector. We recently broadcast a webinar on this subject which went very well - several people have said that it was our best webinar yet.

We were fortunate to have two excellent speakers. The first was Zahl Limbuwala of the BCS Specialist Group on Data Centres. This SG has developed an open source model for measuring server room efficiency, which will be published in January; Zahl presented the case for why energy efficiency is relevant and talked a little about this model.

The second speaker was Kate Craig-Wood, who runs a carbon-neutral hosting company. Kate gave a lot of low-level practical suggestions for improving the energy efficiency, which her company has used in their new data centre. There are obvious advantages in making such improvements, both economic and environmental.

The "Green IT" label covers many more issues, including the disposal of old equipment and power management within the office. Even when considering data centres, there are many avenues to approach, from building design, via power systems, to virtualisation software. We covered many of these topics.

The full title of the webinar was, "The Business Case and Methods for the Green Data Centre". You can see a Windows Media Player recording of the webinar here - just register and login to see it. A flash version will be provided in due course.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Changing Principles

In EA, architecture principles set a framework for making architectural decisions.  They help to establish a common understanding across different groups of stakeholders, and provide guidance for portfolios and projects.  Michael Durso of the LSE gave a good introduction to the idea in a webinar last week for the UCISA EA community.

Many organisations take the TOGAF architecture principles as a starting point.  These are based on the four architectural domains of TOGAF: business, information/data, applications, technology/infrastructure.  These principles tend to describe what should be done, e.g. re-use applications, buy in software rather than build it, keep data secure.  See for example the principles adopted at Plymouth University and the University of Birmingham.

Recently though, I encountered a different way of looking at principles.  The user experience design community tend to focus more on how we should do things.  E.g. we should start with user needs, use iterative developm…

Why the UCISA Capability Model is useful

What do Universities do?

This may seem a strange question to ask and the answer may seem obvious.  Universities educate students and undertake research.  And perhaps they work with industrial partners and create spin-off companies of their worn.  And they may work with local communities, and affiliation bodies for certain degress, and they definitely report on their activities to government bodies such as HEFCE.  They provide student services and support.  The longeryou think about it, the more things you can think of that a University does.

In business, the things that an organisation does are called "capabilities", which is a slightly strange term.  I think it is linked to the HR idea of a combination of the CAPacity and ABILITY to do a task.  Whatever the name, it is a useful concept.  A capability is more basic than a process: a University may change the way it educates students but as long as it remains a University it will educate them one way or another.

A capability …

A new EA Repository

One of my goals since starting this job two years ago has always been to create a repository for architecture documents.  The idea is to have a central store where people can find information about the University's applications, data sources, business processes, and other architectural information.  This store will make it easier for us to explain our plans, to show the current state of the University's information systems, and to explain what Enterprise Architecture is all about.

It's taken a long time to reach this goal, mainly because we're often had more pressing and immediate work to be done.  The creation of a repository is one of those tasks that is very important but never quite urgent.  So I'm now very happy to say that we are in the process of deploying a repository and modelling tool.


This is the culmination of a careful process to select the most appropriate tool for our needs.  We began by organising several workshops to gather requirements from a rang…