eBay has released a trove of information about the efficiency of its data centers, and plans to do so quarterly as part of a mission to continuously track computing resources and tie them to bigger business goals. Read more »
In a webscale data center, peak efficiency feels like a blast furnace. I stepped into the hot aisle of Dell Modular Data Center and 1,920 servers blasted 115-degree air right in my face. If eBay’s Dean Nelson has his way, that was just the beginning. Read more »
Physics professor Tom Murphy fights solar PV snobbery with his explanation of why 15 percent efficiency rates for solar panels is actually quite remarkable and not the real barrier to clean power. Read more »
There have been a few recent analyses showing that cloud computing has significant efficiency and cost advantages. I can think of four reasons why cloud computing is (with few exceptions) significantly more energy efficient than using in-house data centers: Read more »
As part of my recent productivity kick I’ve been thinking about to-do lists. Better task management allows us to get more accomplished while not spending too long managing the process. Here are some suggestions to help you focus on completing tasks rather than managing a list. Read more »
More efficient use of our RSS readers can have a big impact on our overall productivity. As Google Reader is one of the more widely-used RSS readers, I thought it would be a good idea to share some tips for getting the most out of it. Read more »
Sonic Solutions added a new feature to its RoxioNow digital video platform, allowing companies like Blockbuster and Best Buy to deliver videos to mobile devices. By teaming up with Widevine, RoxioNow will now be able to deliver videos to iPhone, iPad, Android and Blackberry devices. Read more »
I should admit to a dirty little secret: I’m a productivity junkie. I get an enormous amount of pleasure out of finding faster and more efficient ways to accomplish everyday tasks; I love to find better ways to gather and process information more quickly. Read more »
Internet companies have made an art out of creating algorithms that can mine data and unleash innovation and opportunities. Picture the famous recommendation engines behind Netflix and Amazon that drive their businesses and have launched new markets for niche content. Google has forever changed advertising and ... Read more at GigaOM Pro »
Just nine metropolitan areas in the U.S. at the end of 2009 could boast the presence of more than 100 commercial and industrial buildings earning the Energy Star label for energy efficiency, according to the just-released list of the EPA’s top 25 cities for Energy Star […] Read more »
Do you ever get to a place in your life or business when you just need to clear the decks, start fresh, clean the slate?
Maybe it starts with the long-awaited end of a project, a move, or even the reorganizing of a close. Read more »
Productivity can seem so elusive at times. It can be hard to prioritize, manage the workload and stay focused, but with a few simple steps and a good dose of discipline, you can be on your way to more control over your days. Plan your exit. […] Read more »
Tools and services for improving a home’s energy efficiency — things like Energy Star appliances, home energy audits and green roofing materials — often lack the glitz and gadget-appeal of solar panels and other highly visible signs that a homeowner has “gone green.” But according to […] Read more »
Eight auto and car parts makers will get more than $187 million in federal funds to help them improve the fuel efficiency of heavy-duty trucks and passenger vehicles, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu announced today. The awards, funded largely through the Recovery Act, come as the […] Read more »
The last week of the year is a great time to get organized. Chances are good that many of your coworkers and/or clients have the week off, so it should be a fairly quiet week for most of us. We could spend that extra time goofing […] Read more »
Facebook’s 300 million users, logging 8 billion minutes per day on the site, leave the social network with a massive — and growing — appetite for data center real estate, and energy bills to match. According to Richard Miller at Data Center Knowledge, Facebook has just […] Read more »
Solar panels are getting cheaper, and as prices decline, companies are looking for ways to reduce manufacturing costs to stay competitive. Here’s the latest innovation from Applied Materials: on Monday the chip and solar equipment maker announced two new technologies that it claims can reduce the […] Read more »
http://www.youtube.com/v/tvdwEz9qcJY&color1=0xb1b1b1&color2=0xcfcfcf&hl=en&feature=player_embedded&fs=1 While the Gigabyte TouchNote T1028x convertible netbook hit other markets a while back, it’s just now finding its way to American shores. Brad Linder from Liliputing offers not one, but two videos that highlight this touchscreen convertible. The obligatory unboxing happens first, followed a device […] Read more »
When I’m talking to people about social web sites, one of the questions I often get asked (usually just after the one about whether you actually need to join all the social networks, just because everyone else is) is “how do you keep up with everything?” […] Read more »
We spend a lot of time talking about efficiency and productivity on this blog, but we also devote quite a bit of energy to writing about new social networks and social media. I talk to many people who are concerned about joining new social web sites […] Read more »
In my recent post, “3 Efficiency Tips for Using Dual Monitors,” I noted that I recently switched to a dual monitor setup, and will never go back to a single monitor. The post also delved into some simple organizational principles for using multiple running applications with […] Read more »
The who’s who of web video is becoming more like that of real life with every passing day. Appearing soon in a webisode near you will be animated versions of Warren Buffett, Martha Stewart (at age 10), Gisele Bündchen and Carl Sagan (posthumously), as well as […] Read more »
What timing: The Department of Energy is ratcheting up efforts to enforce energy efficiency standards for appliances, and has just issued the first subpoena in its new crackdown — less than 24 hours after the agency’s inspector general reported the DOE has been failing, more often […] Read more »
DOE Flunks Again: The latest inspector general’s report finds that the Department of Energy often fails to adjust heating and air conditioning settings to conserve energy, wasting more than $11 million per year. This comes on the heels of another report finding the DOE wastes more […] Read more »
The Department of Energy just opened up $346 million in stimulus funds for boosting the energy efficiency of new and existing buildings — but ultimately the agency’s chief, Steven Chu, wants energy efficiency, and other elements of green building, to be incorporated into structure designs from […] Read more »
As a freelancer, I spend most of my time trying to manage information overload. However, despite this obsession with efficiently gathering information, there are also times when I actively seek out that overload. While a fire hose of notifications and feeds can be too distracting when I am working on client work, if I am looking for inspiration, I want to see as much information as possible in the hope that something will catch my eye and provide the inspiration that I need to kick start a new blog post or some other effort.
Here are a few of my favorite tools for embracing information overload. Read more »
Developing Countries Eye Efficiency: “Emerging markets are waking up to the fact that using energy more wisely puts money in consumer wallets, can help smooth out trade deficits and is better for the planet in terms of reducing carbon emissions.” — WSJ’s Environmental Capital Nitrogen Dioxide […] Read more »
The Obama administration turned the page on a new chapter for energy efficiency today, opening up $346 million in stimulus funds for “energy-efficient technologies in all major types of commercial buildings as well as new and existing homes,” and raising the bar on efficiency and conservation […] Read more »
I’ll admit, I haven’t always tracked my time when it comes to my clients and their projects. Although I always knew roughly how long things took me to complete, until recently, I never kept up with a more detailed view of my time.
The longer I continue this practice, the more I’m coming to appreciate it.
Here’s why it pays to track.
#1 It helps with finding the “time sucks.”
You might realize after tracking your time for a while that certain types of projects are less profitable than others. For instance, if you’re a ghostwriter, you might make considerably more writing blog entries than in-depth white papers. If so, you can adjust your pricing or service offerings to compensate for the difference.
You might also find that a particular client is more demanding on your time than other clients, and as a result, you might decide to drop him, charge him more going forward, or change your methods for working with him in order to be more efficient.
#2 It helps with staying on track.
I currently have a very specific goal to keep me on track – work four paid hours per day. I can quickly glance at my time sheet for a given day and see if I’m anywhere near that goal. If I’m not, I know I need to concentrate on acquiring new projects.
The more consistent you can be about hitting your own daily goal, the more consistent your income and work load will be. Read more »
As a new writer here, let me give you the File → Get Info on me. For my day job, I own a computer repair business here in Lawrence, Kansas. Drawing on my support background, I focus on practical technology from the user perspective; If I […] Read more »
Most of today’s digital cameras can do more than just capture basic snapshots. But few — if any — can do what Casio’s EX-FS10 can: Shoot continuous images in high-speed burst mode and record slow-motion videos. The EX-FS10 is slim, even by compact camera standards: It […] Read more »
New applications or enhancements to existing ones can provide big efficiency benefits, but there are also many simple tweaks, unsung tips, and new ways to think about the tools that you already use that can help you work better. In this post, I’ll share five ways […] Read more »
Renewable Energy Standards Hullabaloo: For all the excitement over a national clean energy mandates, actually putting one in place won’t much change the future energy mix—or the cost of electricity, according to a new analysis from the Energy Information Administration. — WSJ’s Environmental Capital Musk on […] Read more »
I’ve done many posts on this blog about tools and techniques to proactively have information pushed to you via monitoring techniques, dashboards, RSS filtering, smart Twitter clients and more. However, I haven’t really spent much time on research methods for those times when you are seeking information rather than waiting for it to come to you. Most web workers spend at least some of their day doing research for blog posts, client work, or to learn something new, so I wanted to share a couple of my research techniques. Read more »
Digital Rights Management (DRM), at least as it relates to music, is finally taking a dirt nap. Apple’s iTunes Music Store is now 100 percent DRM-free. This morning, when I upgraded to the latest version of the iTunes software to buy the new album by Midival […] Read more »
If the average fuel economy of all new cars on the world’s roads improved 50 percent by 2020 2030, it could save put us on the road to saving more than 6 billion barrels of oil per year by 2050. Think it’s ambitious? Maybe, but the […] Read more »
Last week, I wrote about more efficient RSS reading through pruning, filtering, prioritization, keyboard shortcuts and more. After spending some time reading the comments on the post and thinking about how I use RSS, I realized how many of my feeds are outside of the typical […] Read more »
U.S. to Set Single MPG Standard for Cars, Trucks? Carol Browner, assistant to the president for energy and climate, says she and others in the White House back the idea of a universal fuel-efficiency standard aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions. — Washington Post Growing the […] Read more »
I’ve been on a time management kick lately with posts about reducing my side project overload, managing my time through better prioritization of activities and using Harvest to track my time. One of the things I learned from tracking my time more closely is that I […] Read more »
California might get all the attention for its solar resources in the Mojave desert, but it’s not the only Western state with sun-soaked lands and a growing appetite for solar power. Arizona’s largest utility, Arizona Public Service, unveiled a plan today to invest $18 billion in […] Read more »