So my trusty old Dell Inspiron 4100 laptop finally really died the other night. After many many years of service the hinge snapped. It’s been limping along for a while; the battery no longer works, the disk drive has been replaced, the wireless card is cracked and the track pad barely works. Basically, it’s dead.
It’s amazing the difference seven years makes. At the time the Dell with it’s 1.2GHz Pentium III processor, 1Gb of memory and a 20Gb drive was pretty much a state of the art development machine. I wrote my first .NET applications on it while traveling to and from my Boston based startup. Now it barely handles running a tabbed web browser.
What to replace it with? Something smaller, lighter and generally shinier. After some due consideration I went with a Samsung NC10 10.2-Inch Netbook.
The inexorable advance of technology means that the NC10 is actually a significantly better spec’ed machine than the Dell it replaces at a fraction of the price. I’m upgrading the memory to 2Gb and figure it’ll be small and light enough to take on road trips in place of my existing work laptop which weighs in at over 6lbs.
I’ll be writing more about this later as I load it up with some software and put it through it’s paces.
So what’s green about all this?
Why is this post tagged Green IT? Well you’ll notice that I ran that Dell into the ground. Why? Well apart from cost;
“More than 80 percent of the lifetime energy consumption of a PC occurs before you buy it”
So in general, the longer you can extend the lifetime of your existing hardware the better. The Dell isn’t done yet. The disk drive might find it’s way into some other use before it’s done. Either way it’s environmental impact has been amortized over seven years now it’s time to get it recycled.
Find out more interesting facts about your PC’s environmental impact by taking the Sierra Club’s Green PC quiz.