Our green credentials, and happy birthday Mark

4 minute read

Mark & NickFor a relatively small company we’ve got a lot of Birthdays in January; Brenden last week, Nick next week, and Mark today. As is traditional, I sourced a slightly tacky cake and got the birthday boy to strike a suitable pose – accompanied this time by Nick.

Cake pit-stops aside, we’re fully up to speed again now after the break – things are getting seriously busy! Among the doom and gloom we’re proud to boast happy, productive clients reporting that our digital marketing solutions really work for them.

There’s been comment in the news about Google’s power consumption, led by a report claiming that two of their searches use as much power as boiling a kettle. Google of course dispute this, claiming that the real figure is a fraction of that, and no doubt questions will be asked about the kettle in question. All this did lead me to consider our power consumption and green credentials in general.

As a ratio, I imagine we’re in a minority as we’ve got more servers than staff, a ratio of about 2:1 in fact. Sure, the Googles and Yahoos of this world with server farms the size of a UK village probably have a much higher ratio than even us, but I wonder how many of you all work for companies that have servers everywhere!

A quick back of the envelope calculation leads me to estimate that we consume about 32 amps during office hours, and about 24 amps out of those hours. Sadly we can’t cut this any more out of hours due to the 24/7 nature of providing always on web applications; we can’t even scale down any more at night as international clients use our systems throughout our night, and we perform vital backups and data cleansing at this time.

Our heating bills would add to this figure for a few months of the year, but at least our predominantly north facing office shouldn’t require a huge amount of cooling during a typical English summer. Roughly speaking, half of us commute by train, we’ve got four parking spaces that are usually filled, and the remainder of us (yours truly included) walk to work. It may sound like a luxury, but I walk over 2 miles each way!

So, a few more calculations later about Google, kettles and sending a campaign with Sign-Up.to, and we deduced that any statement we made on the matter would be best defined as a wild assumption rather than fact. What about the power used by your recipients when reading the email? Let’s not even go there!

team member of the week: SimonFinally, as you may have read in a previous blog post, our CEO Matt McNeill has returned from a mid-winter adventure in New Zealand at the Rhythm & Vines festival where eTickets.to was providing the ticketing and entry solution. It was a resounding success, and inspired Matt to present a ‘team member of the week’ award in the form of this lovely Kiwi bird being cradled by Simon, our web application developer responsible for the eTickets redemption system employed at the festival. Well done Simon!