Tuesday, April 22, 2008

From birthday to Earth Day

First, thanks to all of you who stopped by and commented yesterday to wish me a good one. You guys are the best! So, today is a moderately obscure holiday, to be sure. How obscure? I originally got the date wrong (thought it was Sunday), and I'm one of those people who when you say such-and-such is happening on June 14 says, "Oh, Flag Day."* But there's something I've been meaning to tell people about, so I'm here to tell you how you can celebrate Earth Day. Ready?

Stop using Google.

"But, but...", you must be thinking. "Surely Red can't be serious."** However, I have found another google, a more environmentally friendly google. It's called Blackle.com. While not containing all the same bells and whistles as google (you still have to go to the Big G for translations, image searches, etc.), but for every day searching, it's one small thing you can do to save the planet, and maybe even a few cents a month on electricity.

From the Blackle "about" page: Blackle was created by Heap Media to remind us all of the need to take small steps in our everyday lives to save energy. Blackle searches are powered by Google Custom Search. Blackle saves energy because the screen is predominantly black. "Image displayed is primarily a function of the user's color settings and desktop graphics, as well as the color and size of open application windows; a given monitor requires more power to display a white (or light) screen than a black (or dark) screen." Roberson et al, 2002 In January 2007 a blog post titled Black Google Would Save 750 Megawatt-hours a Year proposed the theory that a black version of the Google search engine would save a fair bit of energy due to the popularity of the search engine. Since then there has been skepticism about the significance of the energy savings that can be achieved and the cost in terms of readability of black web pages. We believe that there is value in the concept because even if the energy savings are small, they all add up. Secondly we feel that seeing Blackle every time we load our web browser reminds us that we need to keep taking small steps to save energy. Go here for more information. I congratulate WILATU and Save Your Generation for using predominantly dark colors.**** If you're a Mozilla user, I also recommend that you use the "new window" function rather than the "new tab" function; the latter comes up as a white screen.

Just try it. You might like it, and it's fun to watch the numbers go up. Blackle users collectively have saved over 200,000 watt hours since I started using it a couple of months ago. Happy Earth Day, gang.

*A pregnant friend of mine was due on June 14. This prompted her to tell me that there are two kinds of people in the world; those who when the hear June 14, say, "Oh, Flag Day." And everyone else.***
**"I am serious. And don't call me 'Shirley.'"
***Another friend told me that there are two kinds of people in the world - those who think there are two kinds of people in the world, and everyone else.
****I don't feel self-congratulatory in saying this, because I'm just blogsitting after all. This is the house of EG.*****
*****I just love footnote humor, don't you?******
******EG: I can't figure out what's up with the text sizes. It doesn't seem to be working. If you can fix it, go you!

[Editors note: Text size is not a tough one. And footnote humor is very last week. Picture links above by EG. Wake me up when September's done.]


Cap'n Ergo Jinglebollocks said...

huh, now this IS intersting. Remember when you blogged that we should turn off our lights for 60 minutes? Google had a black page that day AND a footnote saying that there IS NO difference between dark & light screens!! SO WHO'S TELLING THE TRUTH??!?!

Actually, wouldn't you LOWERING THE BRIGHTNESS ON YOUR OWN SCREEN save electricity? You could turn off all the lights and dim the brightness and save a few watts THAT way.

Just sayin'.

Cap'n Ergo Jinglebollocks said...



Evil Evil Genius said...

Oh Cap'n my Cap'n,

Please to be noting this was posted by Red. All views and opinions expressed by her are yadda yadda yadda.

And if you go back to the original Earth Hour post you will see my true motivation in that post.

Now if you will excuse me, I have been popping in way too much for a recluse. Boy I suck at this.


McGone said...

Hold up a second, Red - are you saying I abuse the footnote thing?* While it's an honor to be linked to, I wanted to clarify if this was a backhanded compliment or not.

*Because I totally do.

Red said...


I haven't used google regularly in a couple of months, so I missed that. It only makes sense, though. Your other suggestions might prove helpful, too. And thanks for the link.


No! You're a great recluse! Let's work on that self-esteem, mister.


I was saying no such thing. You could even think of my post as being en homage to a certain extent. The judgment that footnote humor wasn't funny was coming from my editor. Don't mind him. Um, he's not grumpy, he's just drawn that way?

Cap'n Ergo Jinglebollocks said...

Sorry, Red-- I've been reclusive myself when it comes to this blog, I guess; didn't kno' yew wuz a hosting.

Oh, and just so everyone feels better, I'm sitting here in the dark writing-- I'm saving more 'lectricity this way than by using blakoogle, or whatever. I kinda like it-- th' darkness reminds me of my childhood...

McGone said...

Then homage it is! To a certain extent.

So when EEG decides to put the bottles of urine and toenail clippings back in his closet of shame and stop being a recluse are you going to start your own blog?

pistols at dawn said...

Footnote humor is indeed good times. And I'd like to think that my page is black like the space where my heart should be.

Grant Miller said...

Oh. Flag Day. Okay.