Thursday, July 31, 2008

With Microsoft Midori, Platforms Take Shape In The Cloud

The advent of browser-based thin clients like CherryPal and projects from Microsoft, Google, and others indicates that fully cloud-based computing will make its way to the masses.

For centuries philosophers, gurus, and mystics have speculated on the possibility of the transmigration of souls, or separating the spiritual from the corporeal. Now the technology industry is on the verge of achieving the equivalent in computing terms: separating the software platform, or operating system, from the hardware, i.e. the PC. While the concept of cloud-based operating systems has been around for a few years, a series of developments in the last few weeks indicates that such platforms are actually taking shape.

This week news leaked out of Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) about the software giant's Midori research project, which aims to transfer most of the functionality and capability of the Windows OS to the Internet. Designed to support Internet-based computing and multicore architectures, the Midori system is being called Microsoft's first cloud-based OS, and it could one day replace the company's keystone Windows franchise.

Meanwhile a Mountain View, Calif.-based startup called CherryPal just released a new mini-PC, known as the CherryPal, that is designed to operate solely via a Firefox browser. While the new machine, which will run on just 2 watts of power, has an embedded Linux-based OS, it's hidden from the user and is used mainly to boot up the browser to access common applications.

CherryPal aims to "decrease the footprint of the OS even further," says CEO Max Seybold. "The trend is to access more and more applications in the cloud, not call them locally."

Several startups and open-source projects have built cloud-based operating systems, also known as WebTops, such as DesktopTwo, EyeOS,, and YouOS. To date these have mostly been of interest to the open-source development community, but the advent of browser-based "thin clients" like CherryPal and of projects like Midori indicates that fully cloud-based computing could make its way to the masses. Google is also said to be at work on a cloud OS, while a Swedish startup called Xcerion has gained attention for its hybrid, an XML-based system called iCloud.

Launched as a beta test open to a limited number of programmers in the third quarter of 2007, iCloud is a "cloud OS" built around Xcerion's XML Internet Operating System/3 (XIOS/3). While it is accessed via the Internet, iCloud uses an XML virtual machine for local (and offline) operation. Thus, according to Xcerion CEO Daniel Arthursson, it will combine the benefits of cloud computing with the advantages of local PC-based applications, such as rapid execution and a high degree of user control.

Xcerion uses what might be called a "modified cloud" approach: the company has established a fleet of data center servers to host the data, but those machines will host only the compressed XML files containing customers' information, rather than entire hosted versions of Word, Excel, and other popular programs.

The shift of the entire computing platform to the Web is not going to happen soon, but many observers consider it inevitable as cloud-based software and services become more powerful and as broadband connections proliferate.

Also driving the spread of the cloud OS model, says CherryPal's Seybold, was Microsoft's June 30 discontinuation of Windows XP.

"That's forcing a lot of consumers who don't necessarily want to go with Vista to reconsider their overall computing strategy," Seybold remarks. "They can switch to Vista, buy an Apple [machine], or do something completely different."

Running Web-based applications on a platform in the cloud would fall into the "something completely different" category.

Today, businesses can make use of cloud services such as Amazon (NSDQ: AMZN) Web Services, Google (NSDQ: GOOG) Apps, and Salesforce (NYSE: CRM).com CRM, although there are questions about privacy, data security, industry standards, vendor lock-in, and high-performing apps. For more information on cloud computing, you can download a free in-depth report here.

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Among the clouds: CherryPal offers unbelievably tiny desktop

By Ari Allyn-Feuer | Published: July 31, 2008 - 11:11AM CT

Laptops and subnotebooks compete on weight and power consumption, but desktops join that fray only rarely, and pretty much never come out on top. A new, tiny desktop computer from a startup company will do exactly that. The CherryPal company's only product is the CherryPal desktop, a tiny device with a Freescale embedded processor that runs a stripped-down linux variant, including a variety of common apps, at a very appealing price.

Hardware-wise, the CherryPal is nothing short of remarkable, in a weird sort of way. It packs a tri-core Freescale processor, 4GB of NAND Flash, 256 MB of DRAM, and all its other operating components into a ten-ounce package the size of a disappointing sandwich. The tiny device has the horsepower to display films, play music, word process, and browse the internet, and purportedly can handle flash applications like YouTube. According to CherryPal, all this hardware consumes only two watts of electrical power. On the back of this tiny device are two USB ports, VGA, NIC, and stereo ports. All this goodness can be had for a mere $250.

The CherryPal boots in twenty seconds, but its linux variant has none of the usual controls or settings—instead, it boots directly into Firefox and is controlled entirely through the browser. Indeed, this is cloud computing in a very real sense. The device itself has only 4GB of storage locally, but it comes with 50GB more in an assigned cloud storage account with lifetime access provided by CherryPal. Apps and software are updated automatically.

The tiny computer idea is an interesting one, but it's not clear the CherryPal meets the need. Its FreeScale processor, however rugged and capable, is not x86 compatible, so the device can never run a mainstream linux distro or any variant of Windows. This makes it utterly unsuitable for HTPC and other such applications. Also, while the device itself is tiny and can be carried around, it needs to be hooked to the Internet, monitor, keyboard, and mouse, which are not available together in very many places. Because of this, it seems unlikely it will actually be moved that often, in which case the purpose of making its hardware so tiny is not really clear.

CherryPal feels that environmental concerns and advertising can overcome these problems. The firm touts its device as a "green" computing solution, consuming less power and material than other computers, and lasting a considerably longer period of time, up to ten years. That's pretty doubtful, but then some of the firm's other reasoning is dubious. Since the 2W figure is small compared to the power needed by any conceivable display, the difference between this solution and one powered by Intel's more muscular Atom processor is insignificant. And, if CherryPal really wanted to save materials, they probably should have gone the subnotebook route and thrown their hat into that ring. Marketing based on sheer price runs into the sad reality of the $99 linux box special Fry's does on some black Fridays and the thriving market in used computers.

The device has some problems, and many users will prefer usability on the go, more muscular processors, and x86 compatibility when laying out money for compact computers. But, if CherryPal is right, consumers interested in simple, minimal, cheap, and green computing in the home may latch onto this new device. Users who want to pop their cherries will have to wait some time, though; CherryPal doesn't even plan to release the full details of its plans until the third quarter of this year. up!

Earth-Friendly Computing: Case Study

Rockhurst University Implements Earth-Friendly Computing

Kansas City, Missouri. Rockhurst University is taking a giant leap to reduce its environmental impact through earth-friendly computer labs. When classes resume this fall, Rockhurst students will sit down in front of workstations that use 90 percent less energy than traditional PCs. Traditional CPUs are replaced with devices called thin clients, which are slightly larger than VHS tapes.

The technology, called thin-client computing, not only requires less energy to run, but the smaller equipment requires significantly less material to produce. Traditional CPUs are replaced with devices called thin clients, which are slightly larger than VHS tapes. That equates to less energy spent on transportation and less material to eventually recycle. Each unit is expected to work effectively for five to six years, nearly double the life span of traditional PCs, and its low heat output means less power needed for air conditioning.

In addition to environmental benefits, the new system is a valuable IT management solution and will provide significant cost savings for the university. The system calls for moving the software and storage from each individual computer to five powerful servers located in the data center in Conway Hall. This Virtual Desktop Infrastructure will speed processing times, provide instant desktop recovery and lessen the time spent on upgrades and repair.

Users may not even notice the changes, as they will encounter the same familiar Windows experience. If anything, students will detect much faster logon and processing times. And should one of the new workstations go down, users can logon to another lab machine to instantly recover exactly where they were without losing any data – even without saving.

Centralizing the management of more than 230 desktop computers – in all 18 labs across campus – will reduce the downtime for individual upgrades and repair. Computer Services will be able to download the latest software updates one time in the data center instead of individually on each machine, and most repairs will be made remotely.

“This is a good solution for Rockhurst," said Matt Heinrich, associate vice president of facilities and technology. "It's the responsible thing to do and a perfect fit with our mission. I feel good that this is one way in which we can help make God's good world better.”

Once the system is fully implemented, Rockhurst plans to donate more than 200 CPUs to local nonprofit organizations, including Cristo Rey Kansas City.

Thin-client technology is catching on in businesses across the nation. While not the only university in the area to use this green technology, Rockhurst’s large-scale implementation currently puts it ahead of the curve among schools in the region.

To learn more, visit Rockhurst Computer Services. Please feel free to contact for more information. Your questions and feedback are encouraged.
(816) 501-4357 - Conway Hall, 4th Floor - 1100 Rockhurst Road - Kansas City, Missouri

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

HP, Intel and Yahoo team up on cloud computing

July 29, 2008 by Kevin Allison

Cloud computing’ is fast becoming this year’s ‘green data centre,’ if the recent excitement about technologies that allow people to perform increasingly complicated computing tasks over the internet is any guide.

Compared with some other recent announcements, however, the cloud computing project announced on Tuesday by Yahoo, Intel and Hewlett-Packard appears to pack a particular punch.

In a joint press release, the companies said they would create a “test bed” of six data centres designed to promote open-source collaboration around intensive cloud computing. The array will allow companies, academics and other instiutions to conduct cloud computing experiments on a global scale.

In a further sign that the initiative is more than just PR pap, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, one of the top US computer science schools, is among the institutions that will host the project, along with the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany and Singapore’s Infocomm Development Authority. HP Labs and Intel Research will also contribute, with the assistance of software tools from Yahoo.

Prabhakar Raghavan, head of Yahoo Research, summed up the effort thusly: “With this test bed, not only can researchers test applications at Internet scale, they will also have access to the underlying computing systems to advance understanding of how systems software and hardware function in a cloud environment.”

As GigaOm points out, the effort can also be seen as an attempt by HP, Yahoo and Intel to create a sandbox for researchers to rival a similar offering from Google, which laid down its marker in cloud computing in partnership with IBM in October. Microsoft has also recently declared its intention to become a superpower in cloud computing.

A world in which companies and people can ‘plug in’ to computing resources just like they do electricity is still a long way off. But Tuesday’s initiative looks like it could be useful to researchers looking for ways to move beyond the relatively simple tasks that can be performed in the cloud today - like sales force management and other types of productivity applications - to bigger, more resource-intensive processes.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Baby steps in green computing

By WyldKard
July 29, 2008

A few months back, we commented on the slow baby-steps the computer industry is taking to green consumer computers, which comes across as one-part morality and one-part bandwagon-hopping at best.

Take Dell’s Studio Hybrid PC for example, which was last reported to have an external bamboo casing as a sign of how green it is. Now, however, the Studio Hybrid PC is advertised as having interchangeable color sleeves for personalization, “or one in bamboo”. So much for a steadfast green initiative, Dell.

While the Studio Hybrid PC may very well be greener than the typical desktop machine thanks to containing recycled materials, the details of this greening are slim on Dell’s site, which isn’t much of a surprise considering the final “bamboo-optional” product.

Third-party storage company Fabrik recently touted their [re]drive, an external hard drive with a bamboo/recycled aluminum chassis which acts as a heat-sink as well as a drive enclosure. That’s a basic concept we can get behind, but with bamboo in abundance, why aren’t more companies focusing on using easily-sustainable materials instead of even bothering with recycled aluminum, particularly when we all know that not everyone recycles their aluminum anyway? If anything, save the metals for where they’re important, like in the actual hard drive.

That’s not to say that the green initiatives of Dell, Fabrik, and other companies aren’t appreciated, but let’s not over-appreciate them, either. Consumer electronics are notoriously dirty creatures that spit in the face of sustainability, requiring significant environmental footprints as part of the material mining process, production, and transportation required.

With that in mind, there’s little reason that more components of modern computers couldn’t be replaced with greener alternatives like bamboo, particularly with the minimal cost associated with such replacements. Or, we can keep backing petroleum use with every plastic panel we decide to put on our overpriced toys.

Related post:
Green Computers An Oxymoron?

The Greenwash Guide

Greenwash: Annoying or dangerous?

There does seem to be a lot of greenwash
out there, and the temptation for more is
significant. But you could question…is it
really a problem?

If you’re an ‘environmentalist’ type of person advertisements
for ‘eco-friendly’ SUVs are obviously annoying, but why do we
get so much more upset about greenwash than the thousands
of advertisements that happily and legally try to sell us
unsustainable products?

A truly rational approach would surely rail against advertisements
for disposable nappies, cheap flights, water-polluting detergents and
obesity-causing fast food. There’s far more money spent
on advertising those destructive products and services
than on greenwash.

Advertising is expensive, and it’s not an exact science
- as Lord Lever the founder of Unilever purportedly
acknowledged, “half our advertising is wasted; I just
don’t know which half”. This growth in selling green
is a sign of things to come: you want to buy green,
you expect companies to be green, and they have
eagerly started to tell you that they are… occasionally
without good reason for doing so.

Enter greenwash...

The full, and rather difficult to
read, version of the Oxford English
Dictionary defines greenwash as;

“Disinformation disseminated by
an organisation, etc., so as to
present an environmentally
responsible public image; a public
image of environmental
responsibility promulgated by or
for an organisation, etc., but
perceived as being unfounded or
intentionally misleading.” 8

Green words

The term greenwash only officially became part of
the English language in 1999 with that entry into the
Oxford English Dictionary, but it’s been around a lot
longer than that. In fact the first recorded use of the
term was by David Bellamy in the periodical Sanity
over twenty years ago. By Earth Day in 1990 the
concept was catching on. Most greenwash back then
didn’t include specific claims or marketing messages;
instead it was more ham-fisted images of frolicking
dolphins and lush rainforests set beside the company
logo, all to convey an impression of eco-friendliness.

These early attempts to green a company’s image
now seem laughable, especially when you think
that Bhopal, Exxon Valdez and other environmental
and social corporate disasters were still fresh in the
memory. But even these early attempts at greening
company images didn’t stay fashionable and the
1990s saw only occasional greenwash spikes. Those
were the years of specialist green products and
outlets like the Body Shop. Although greenwash
may still have been around, the audience affected
by it was small and the spending on communications
low. Only with the recent green wave, when green
consumption first dissolved its boundaries and
entered the mainstream, has greenwash raised its
head again.

During 2008 the USA are reviewing their code and
the UK is considering further guidance on theirs.
It’s likely that the Australian, French and Norwegian
codes will all encourage other countries to consider
greenwash rules.

Of course, greenwash doesn’t mean the same wherever you are.
One apocryphal story has it that a climate campaign run by a large
company across the UK, USA and China was accused
of greenwash in the first, hailed a brave in the second
and pulled because of government upset at being
implicitly criticised in the last. The next twelve months
should be interesting for those planning worldwide
green marketing campaigns.

A virtuous or vicious cycle?

So what can we expect in the coming months
and years from the greenwashers? From
our research and interviews here are a few
predictions on what we’ve got coming, both
the good and bad.
Cyber greenwash

The Advertising Standards Authority covers obvious advertisements and PR, but what about the blogs, virals and wikipedias of cyber space?

One of the least pleasant forms of greenwash around is
called ‘astroturfing’, and we’re likely to see more of it.

According to said Wikipedia, ‘astroturfing’ is:
“The term is a wordplay based on ‘grassroots democracy’ efforts, which are truly spontaneous undertakings largely sustained by private persons (not politicians, governments, corporations, or public relations firms). ‘AstroTurf’ refers to the bright green artificial grass used in some sports stadiums, so ‘astroturfing’ refers to imitating or faking popular (‘grassroots’) opinion or behaviour.”

Watch your mouse

Online ‘astroturfing’ means quotes from the public, blogs
written by interested individuals, spontaneous email chains,
and yes, even Wikipedia pages that seem to be put together by
ordinary folk, but which in fact are the careful creations of PR
firms hired by greenwashers. A moment’s thought shows how
widespread this could be.

Luckily, surveys prove that we grade online information as the
least trustworthy of all types. Keep your greenwash antennae
extra sensitive online and check the sources of all pseudosounding
science or green claims.

How long until the first green ‘spam’ email? Actually, it’s
probably already happened.

Global standards

The International Standards Organisation has their own green
claims code, yet a number of national governments have felt
the need to develop their own. Cultural differences, green
awareness levels and even political affiliations all affect how a
society judges greenwash.

It seems likely that greenwash will begin to raise questions at
an international level. National governments may even consider
penalising national companies who greenwash overseas.

Raising the bar

The good news is that with a growing market comes growing
competition, and we are all likely to be offered more specifically
designed green products, and much greener versions of old
favourites. If we buy them we’ll get even more.

However, this opens up a risk for business. A product that looks
‘pretty green’ in 2008 might just look like greenwash by 2009.

A greener future

If we project the current speed of growth in green
consumption in the UK then the ‘green pound’ could
be worth £53.76bn in five years and nearly £180bn by 2022.
That kind of market is going to have a real and lasting
positive impact on the planet and probably make us
all a bit happier.

The Greenwash Guide
By Jonathan Bardelline
July 18, 2008
This report (PDF) takes a look at the main issues and
players involved in greenwashing, giving an overview
of the many types of greenwashing, how it's committed
and how to avoid it.

The graphic-rich document includes real world examples
of right and wrong ways to make eco-claims. Any company
advertising the environmental benefits of their company,
products or services should be aware of the many different
environmental advertising standards as well as best practices
to follow.

Source URL:

MORE about Greenwashing by Joel Makower:

How Bad Is Greenwashing, Really?

The Six Sins of Greenwashing

Four Out of Five Information Technology (IT) Decision Makers Value Green IT

VERNON HILLS, Ill. – July 23, 2008 – Eighty percent of IT decision makers across government and corporate sectors believe that implementing Green IT solutions in their organizations is important, according to a new survey by CDW Corporation. Additionally, almost half (49 percent) report positive reputation as one of the greatest benefits of adopting Green IT.

However, 51 percent of IT decision makers hesitate to employ Green IT technologies because of concerns about cost, while 25 percent cite complexity of implementing and maintaining Green IT solutions. Twenty-one percent cite potential disruptions to current systems as a top barrier to adoption.

“Even though IT decision makers clearly recognize the importance of Green IT solutions such as virtualization and server consolidation, there are always going to be growing pains involved with making a significant change to an organization,” said CDW Vice President Mark Gambill, the company’s executive responsible for market insights. “If going green means replacing servers that are already delivering reliable IT to an organization, then widespread adoption may take some time.” Green IT is the practice of using natural resources efficiently and minimizing environmental impact through the entire IT product lifecycle. Examples of Green IT initiatives include IT purchasing practices that favor environmental protection, efficient IT energy use and safe recycling of electronic equipment. For more information about attitudes of IT decision makers toward Green IT, please visit

According to CDW, the biggest “champions” of Green IT solutions within corporations and government organizations tend to be executives at the highest level. Forty-six percent of corporate IT decision makers— including 73 percent of small businesses— cite the CEO, President, Partner or Owner as the biggest proponent of Green IT. However, less than a third of small businesses have begun to implement Green IT versus nearly two-thirds of large businesses.

“In some cases, large businesses have greater flexibility when it comes to implementing new technologies,” added Gambill. “However, Green IT solutions can benefit organizations of all sizes. As IT decision makers become more aware of the available options, Green IT adoption will likely continue to broaden.”

In contrast to corporations, only 35 percent of government organizations have implemented Green IT solutions, and more than a third (39 percent) of them have no plans to implement Green IT in the next two years.

“It will be interesting to see how the priorities of government organizations regarding Green IT may change over time as its value in long-term cost savings becomes more clear,” added Gambill.

In early August, CDW plans to release the 2008 Energy Efficient IT (E2IT) Report, which will focus on the more narrow topic of IT energy efficiency. Some of the findings in the E2IT Report will include the priority that IT professionals give to energy efficiency and best practices from organizations that have been most successful in this area. The basis for the E2IT Report is a June CDW survey of 778 IT professionals in business, government and education.

About the CDW Green IT survey

The CDW Green IT survey was created by CDW Corporation, and research and analysis is conducted by independent polling firm Richard Day Research of Evanston, Ill. Decision makers are invited from two large national panels of IT decision makers built and maintained by E-Rewards and Survey Sampling International. Data reported in this release is based on a survey of 1,041 IT decision makers conducted between May 27 and June 3, 2008.

CDW Corporation also publishes the CDW IT Monitor, a bimonthly indicator of the direction, momentum and mindset of the U.S. IT marketplace. The IT Monitor is based on a national online survey of at least 1,000 IT decision makers from business (small, medium and large) and government (state, federal and local) sectors.

About CDW

CDW is a leading provider of technology solutions for business, government and education. Ranked No. 39 on Forbes’ list of America’s Largest Private Companies, CDW features dedicated account managers who help customers choose the right technology products and services to meet their needs. The company’s technology specialists offer expertise in designing customized solutions, while its advanced technology engineers can assist customers with the implementation and long-term management of those solutions. Areas of focus include notebooks, desktops, printers, servers and storage, unified communications, security, wireless, power and cooling, networking, software licensing and mobility solutions.

CDW was founded in 1984 and as of December 31, 2007 employed approximately 6,300 coworkers. In 2007, the company generated sales of $8.1 billion. For more information, visit

Monday, July 28, 2008

Low-Power, High-Functionality PowerPC Computing

From Jack Campbell's About Jack website:


In early 2007 I was approached by executives with Tsinghua Tongfang Co., Ltd. to help the company with its next-generation multimedia and PC product plans. In mid-2007 I actually accepted a full-time job with THTF in their Shenzhen R&D center, as Vice President, Strategic Development.

My primary mission was to develop an entirely new line of personal computers for the company to show at the CES exhibition in January 2008. The idea was to show products that would be uniquely positioned for success in the United States and European markets. My approach was to locate a microprocessor no other PC maker was using, create a hardware platform in sizes and with feature sets unlike any others, and create an all-new operating system approach, one aimed at leveraging Web 2.0 technologies in a localhost environment.

Lime PC Is Born

By driving THTF's R&D division of about 80 full-time engineers, and working in close partnership with Freescale's Austin, Texas engineering team, I was able to manage this project to a successful showing at CES of a new mini desktop PC, three handheld PCs, a combo TV-PC, and a new flat screen display, all under the LimePC brand. The unexpected market reentry of a PowerPC based platform drew an amazing response at CES. And, THTF has since moved along to make many OEM deals based on the platform I created for them.

CherryPal Strikes A Deal

Recently, Max Seybold has begun buying the little desktop system I created from THTF and reselling it here in the United States under his new CherryPal brand. It is always fun to see the products I create find market success, and I hope Max all the best in his efforts. I will only say it is a shame he has elected to not use the advanced software platform and the hard disk based product version that I created; instead, adopting a browser-based approach that I and my team rejected very early in our project as being completely unmarketable. Maybe Max will call, and we can get the right software platform on his box... the one actually designed to go there.

In any case, this was a fun project, and resulted in a truly world-changing new low-cost personal computer platform being birthed. You can see a few photos of the products and our CES booth here on this page, and you can see the simplified CherryPal offering here.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Smaller PCs Cause Worry for Industry

July 21, 2008

SAN FRANCISCO — The personal computer industry is poised to sell tens of millions of small, energy-efficient Internet-centric devices. Curiously, some of the biggest companies in the business consider this bad news.

In a tale of sales success breeding resentment, computer companies are wary of the new breed of computers because their low price could threaten PC makers’ already thin profit margins.
The new computers, often called netbooks, have scant onboard memory. They use energy-sipping computer chips. They are intended largely for surfing Web sites and checking e-mail. The price is small too, with some selling for as little as $300.

The companies that pioneered the category were small too, like Asus and Everex, both of Taiwan. Despite their wariness of these slim machines, Dell and Acer, two of the biggest PC manufacturers, are not about to let the upstarts have this market to themselves. Hewlett-Packard, the world’s biggest PC maker, recently sidled into the market with a hybrid of a notebook and netbook that it calls the Mini-Note.

Several makers are taking the low-powered PCs one step further. In the coming months, they are expected to introduce “net-tops,” low-cost versions of desktop computers intended for Internet access.

A Silicon Valley start-up called CherryPal says it will challenge the idea that big onboard power is required to allow basic computing functions in the Internet age. On Monday it plans to introduce a $240 desktop PC that is the size of a paperback and uses two watts of power compared with the 100 watts of some desktops.

It wants to take advantage of the trend toward “cloud computing,” in which data is managed and stored in distant servers, not on the actual machine.

Industry analysts say that the emergence of this new class of low-cost, cloud-centric machines could threaten titans like Microsoft and Intel, or even H.P. and Dell, because the giants have built their companies on the notion that consumers want more power and functions built into their next computer.

Some of the big computer companies put a positive spin on the low-cost machines, saying they welcome new categories. But they would just as soon this niche did not take off, given the relatively low profit margins.

“When I talk to PC vendors, the No. 1 question I get is, how do I compete with these netbooks when what we really want to do is sell PCs that cost a lot more money?” said J. P. Gownder, an analyst with Forrester Research.

Even as some PC vendors are jumping into the fray, others say they are resisting. Fujitsu, one of the world’s top 10 personal computer makers, said that it believes the low-cost netbook trend is a dangerous one for the bottom line.

“We’re sitting on the sidelines not because we’re lazy. We’re sitting on the sidelines because even if this category takes off, and we get our piece of the pie, it doesn’t add up,” said Paul Moore, senior director of mobile product management for Fujitsu. “It’s a product that essentially has no margin.”

Stan Glasgow, chief executive of Sony Electronics, said, “We are not looking at competing with Asus.” But he said the company is investigating what consumers want in a second PC.

It is a market that caught the major computer companies — both hardware and software — by surprise after Asus, entered the market last year with the $300 Eee PC. The company thought the device would essentially appeal to the education market, or as a starter laptop for adolescents, but the interest has turned out to be broader.

With an emphasis not in on-board applications (like word processing), but Internet-based ones like Google Docs, the Linux-based Eee PC sold out its 350,000 global inventory. It has been in short supply ever since, said Jackie Hsu, president of the American division of Asus. Everex has sold around 20,000 of its CloudBook, which sells for about $350.

The sales are a veritable drop in the bucket compared with the 271 million desktop and laptop PCs shipped globally last year. But there is an intensifying debate about how big the category can become, and what segment of the market finds these computers appealing.

IDC, a market research firm, is predicting that the category could grow from fewer than 500,000 in 2007 to nine million in 2012 as the market for second computers expands in developed economies.

Intel is projecting that by 2011, the market for the netbooks will be 40 million units a year, which is why Intel is jumping in with low-powered chips that would be used in the netbooks and the net-tops.

With its new Atom chip, Intel is competing against upstarts including Via, a Taiwanese company that has a chip called the C7. The C7 is showing up in netbooks and, indeed, is being used in the Everex models and in H.P.’s $500 Mini-Note.

William Calder, an Intel spokesman, said that the cost of the Atom for PC makers is around $44, compared with $100 for a state-of-the-art chip. He said that Intel executives think the market for low-cost PCs is too big to pass up, though it does raise a potential threat to more powerful and more profitable computing lines.

Microsoft has been a reluctant participant too. Even though it is no longer selling its Windows XP operating system software, it made an exception for makers of these low-cost laptops and desktops. Microsoft said it was responding to a groundswell of consumer interest in the low-cost machines, but some makers of those machines say Microsoft did so reluctantly because it did not want to lose market share to Linux.

Tim Bajarin, an industry analyst with Creative Strategies, a technology consulting firm, said that while the big computer companies have been caught off guard by the market’s potential, they are finding little choice but to dive in.

“H.P., Dell and these other PC makers have learned that if there’s consumer interest, you can’t just sit back and let someone else steal all the thunder,” he said.

Hewlett-Packard thinks consumers want more than a mobile Internet terminal. “Our competitors proved there is a pretty good market,” Robert Baker, a notebook product manager at Hewlett-Packard conceded.

Dell has not been specific about the price or features of its entry, but Michael Tatelman, vice president for marketing at Dell, said he believed that the category would have limited consumer appeal.

They are useful for someone on the go at an airport or on a commuting trip on a bus, but not for a more intense computing experience, he said. “It’s a good 30- to 90-minute experience.”

Copyright 2008 The New York Times Company

How much it costs to run your computer


Desktop Computer

60-250 watts

On screen saver

60-250 watts (no difference)

Sleep / standby

1 -6 watts


15-45 watts


Typical 17" CRT

80 watts

Typical 17" LCD

35 watts

Apple MS 17" CRT, mostly white (blank IE window)

63 watts

Apple MS 17" CRT, mostly black (black Windows desktop with just a few icons)


Screen saver (any image on screen)

Same as above (no difference)

Sleeping monitor (dark screen)

0-15 watts

Monitor turned off at switch

0-10 watts

To calculate your costs use this formula:

Watts x Hours Used

x Cost per kilowatt-hour = Total Cost


For example, let's say you have a big high-end computer with a gaming-level graphics card and an old CRT monitor, and you leave them on 24/7. That's about 330 watts x 24 hours x 365 days/yr = 2,890,800 watt-hours, or 2891 kilowatt-hours. If you're paying $0.14 per kWh, you're paying $405 a year to run your computer.

Let's try a different example: You have a computer that's less of an energy hog, like in iMac G5 20", which uses about 105 watts, and you're smart enough to turn it off when you're not using it. You use it for two hours a day, five days a week. That's ten hours a week, or 520 hours a year. So your 105 watts times 520 hours = 54,600 watt-hours. Divide by 1000 and you have 55 kilowatt-hours (kWh). If you're paying 10¢ per kilowatt-hour, then you're paying $5.50 a year to run your computer.

That's quite a range, $5.50 to $405 a year. It really depends on what kind of computer it is, and how much you use it -- and especially whether you sleep it when you're not using it. Both the examples above are extremes. I used to have only one example somewhere in the middle but then I'd see people on blogs and messageboards misquoting it by writing, "Mr. Electricity says a computer costs about about $150/yr. to run" No, that is not what I said. I said that was just an example. Your situation is almost certainly different, and you need to consider all the variables, like what kind of computer it is, how much you use it, and most especially whether you leave it running all the time or sleep it when you're not using it.

To calculate your costs use this formula:

Watts x Hours Used
_______________ x Cost per kilowatt-hour = Total Cost

[(Watts times hours used) divided by 1000] times Cost per kilowatt-hour equals Total Cost

For example, let's say you have a big high-end computer with a gaming-level graphics card and an old CRT monitor, and you leave them on 24/7. That's about 330 watts x 24 hours x 365 days/yr = 2,890,800 watt-hours, or 2891 kilowatt-hours. If you're paying $0.14 per kWh, you're paying $405 a year to run your computer.

Let's try a different example: You have a computer that's less of an energy hog, like in iMac G5 20", which uses about 105 watts, and you're smart enough to turn it off when you're not using it. You use it for two hours a day, five days a week. That's ten hours a week, or 520 hours a year. So your 105 watts times 520 hours = 54,600 watt-hours. Divide by 1000 and you have 55 kilowatt-hours (kWh). If you're paying 10¢ per kilowatt-hour, then you're paying $5.50 a year to run your computer.

That's quite a range, $5.50 to $405 a year. It really depends on what kind of computer it is, and how much you use it -- and especially whether you sleep it when you're not using it. Both the examples above are extremes. I used to have only one example somewhere in the middle but then I'd see people on blogs and messageboards misquoting it by writing, "Mr. Electricity says a computer costs about about $150/yr. to run" No, that is not what I said. I said that was just an example. Your situation is almost certainly different, and you need to consider all the variables, like what kind of computer it is, how much you use it, and most especially whether you leave it running all the time or sleep it when you're not using it.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Stamp of Approval

I received the CherryPal Brand Angel stamp of approval! Now, its hurry up and receive the CherryPal desktop so I can share about the experience of using it and help others get one at an even lower price!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

In anticipation of the taste of a CherryPal

Pick me - I want to be free!
Free me, Free me first!!
Release me from the tyranny of Microsoft, Apple, power-hungry desktops, and expensive laptops!!!
Save me from the upgrades, downloads, viruses, worms, crashes, costs and liabilities of my present personal computer addiction!!!!

Will we see it in July?
Will it come in August?
When will I be free?

Such are the thoughts of one who is dreaming of getting their hands on the currently elusive, much touted, CherryPal hand-held, cloud computing, environmentally and user-friendly, intended to be ubiquitous, little box...

I've scoured the Internet looking for every mention, utterance, opinion and inkling of new information about the CherryPal...

I've responded to emails, answered questions, read the posts, thrown up a blog, shlepped to MountainView, joined the facebook, followed the twitter, written on walls, worn the tshirt, stuck on the sticker...

What more can I do?

I can write about my anticipation, add lame commentary, and fill up space and time while looking up into the sky...

"Ok, ok," you say, "Don't bounce. Ya gotta have a little faith, man. Like patience or sumtin..."

Right on....
More will be revealed
Up in the clouds or down on the floor
Where-ever it is, man,
I want more
and now

Just don't ever let me hear you say that you want a Cherry to be your Pal, because it is, man, it is...

Friday, July 11, 2008

The geography of green consumerism

Why does Berkeley have so many Priuses?
Jun 16th 2008

BUYING green is all the rage: barely a day passes without the rollout of a new “environmentally responsible” product. This week it's the waterless car-wash, an energy saving computer monitor and a biodegradable dish-rack. Ignore, for a moment, whether green consumerism is a contradiction in terms. Pass over the question of whether these products actually deliver the benefits they promise. Who buys them—the rich, the idealistic, the penny pinching or the guilty?

Perhaps energy saving cars, light-bulbs, computer monitors and building materials appeal to those who value their future environmental benefits. But evidence suggests that, despite tangible financial rewards, most people do not make even small environmentally sound changes at home, such as installing energy-efficient light bulbs or not leaving the television on standby.

By and large, then, these green products are aimed at the environmentally concerned. Matthew Kahn and Ryan Vaughn, economists at the University of California at Los Angeles, wrote a paper analysing the patterns of green consumerism in California. They noticed that Berkeley, California, just a few hours up the coast, has lots of Priuses, organic food, solar panels and public transit—and no Hummers.

Messrs Kahn and Vaughn built a database of every certified green building, sorted by zip codes. They looked at where hybrid vehicles were registered, and constructed a measure of each zip code's politics based on analysis of party registration and voting records on two binding statewide environmental initiatives.

They also controlled their results for factors such as age, income and ethnicity, allowing them to see environmental commitment all the more starkly. Malibu, for instance, has many Prius owners; Beverly Hills has few, but both are largely wealthy and white: it is no stretch to deduce, then, that Malibu residents tend to be greener than those of Beverly Hills.

When they average their measure of greenery by zip code, across entire cities, and then rank the results, the usual suspects come out top and bottom. Of 349 places in California, the ten greenest are Albany, Berkeley, Fairfax, Belvedere, Piedmont, Mill Valley, Larkspur, Portola Valley, Sausalito and Palo Alto. Folsom and Bakersfield rank near the bottom. And mapping their index by zip code across the entire state gives a graphic representation of where California's greenies live.

All of this raises the question of why the politically green huddle together in the same sorts of locations. Dr Kahn speculates that small initial differences in spatial attributes, such as being close to a beach or public transport, may create the initial seeds of green communities. “This in turn attracts ‘green businesses’,” he explains, “such as tofu restaurants and bike shops, and this in turn attracts more greens.” The process culminates when greens have enough political clout to elect politicians and enact green regulation that further enhances their community’s attractiveness to environmentalists.

Though greens are a small minority in America generally, concentrated in certain locations, they can have a strong influence on local policy. California itself is quite green relative to other states, and taking unilateral steps, which are much stricter than federal mandates, to mitigate its greenhouse gas emissions.

While green clustering could certainly cause hot spots in green consumerism, let us not neglect other possible factors when it comes to the Prius. What we know of work on social interactions suggests that the chance that any person will buy a Prius is likely to be related to the probability that his neighbour buys one. Of course, competitively purchasing the latest green products to keep up with the Joneses is hardly environmentally friendly. But that, as they say, is another matter entirely.

Here is the link to the report referenced in the above article. Page 6 shows the results.
Green Market Geography: The Spatial Clustering of Hybrid Vehicle and LEED Registered Buildings

Thursday, July 10, 2008

CherryPal: A No-Impact PC That Makes a Statement

Posted on July 4, 2008 at 7:15 pm ET
Don Willmott , Forecast Earth Correspondent

Now this is interesting. A mysterious new company called CherryPal has announced the development of a tiny new computer that will consume an astonishingly low two watts of power, or about one fiftieth the power of a typical desktop PC. The stated mission: to free us from the tyranny of Microsoft, Apple, power-hungry desktops, and expensive laptops.

The CherryPal will use the 400-MHz Freescale mobile processor and leave out a hard drive, opting instead for 4GB of flash memory. Also include: 256MB of RAM, WiFi, USB ports, an Ethernet port, and a VGA port for your monitor. In other words, it's a computer designed to encourage you to do all your work—and store all your work—online or, as they say, in "the cloud." There's no price yet, but CherryPal says it will the cheapest computer around.
Engadget's article about the CherryPal generated some great comments.

"Isn't this all a little disingenuous? I mean these two-watt computers are great but the processing is still going on somewhere, right? I'm not trying to discourage innovation or anything (not that I could) but it's kind of a misdirection, 'Look two-watt PC!' but how much power does it take to run the server farm that supports these things out 'in the cloud'?" Good question. And this: "It's not a computer, it's a smartphone. Without the phone... or the smart." Given the specs, that's a pretty accurate assessment.

CherryPal may end up being most useful as a pointer toward a future of "cloud computing," but we're not there yet. It'll be interesting to hear what the reviewers say once they get it into their labs.

Don Willmott's blog posts are provided by LifeWire, a part of The New York Times Company.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Cherry Pal laptop

I can’t wait to see the Cherry Pal laptop I heard about. I can’t imagine anything much better than an inexpensive light laptop that isn’t an energy hog. The Cherry Pal site now says coming August 4. That day can’t come fast enough for me!

While I expect that my Mac mini will still see some action for my business graphic design work and spreadsheet crunching, I am hoping to green up my day to day surfing and as much else as I can with a Cherry Pal.

I recently joined the telecommuting workforce, so I’m burning less fosil fuel in my gas guzzler; it’ll be great to save more energy at home too! I can work in my screened porch at the laptop and leave the lights off inside. Maybe I’ll see my power bills drop like my gas bills have–did I mention I can’t wait?

Sunday, July 6, 2008

1st "Green" computer coming soon

So I know that many of you out there may just skim through the different news posts, but this one is really worth a read. As I was browsing around the internet, as so many of us do, I came across an ad that caught my eye. Sometime in late July, a totally "Green" computer called the CherryPal is going to launch, and it looks to be pretty neat.With no actual moving parts or any of that, it can deliver the power of a standard computer that is out on the market right now, all for a very low cost to both your wallet and the environment. Read on for some more details and a better picture of the unit.

Well the unit (pictured below) is called the CherryPal, and it looks to be the future, or what I hope is the future. This little guy is supposedly comparable to that of a Macbook or standard Dell computer. While you will not be playing Crysis on this little black box, you will be able to do pretty much everything else quite well. The CherryPal is ideal for anyone who wants a no-hassle, no-software upgrades, no-virus computer experience.

The company that created chips for Apple computers has developed CherryPal's triple-core processor. By combining multiple computer chips onto one, CherryPal not only reduces the cost of manufacturing computers, they also reduce the amount of power needed to run them. The computers are so energy efficient that they require only 2W of power to run. Also, the CherryPal has no moving parts, so the computer is completely silent and very durable. CherryPal's operating system is strongly tied to the ideas of cloud computing—where applications are hosted remotely and accessed over the Internet. Users will be given 4GB of flash-based solid state internal storage and additional online storage.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Cherrypal: World’s Most Affordable Green PC

This green PC comes in a small, affordable package weighing just 10.5 ounces and consuming no more than two watts of power. The triple-core processor only has one fifth of the components of traditional computers, boots-up in 20 seconds, and promises to be faster than Vista and mac’s OS-X.

read more | digg story

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Mother Earth thanks you, CherryPal

Posted June 18, 2008 07:21 PM by BPerLee
Filed Under: Desktops | Tags: CherryPal, Green Computer

Let's be frank: the group of people that care about computers have never been very green. It's true! Computers are energy-hogging, constantly running machines that, as they consume electricity, contribute to global warming and the end of the world as we know it. So can we as nerds bake our cake and eat it? In all seriousness, a computer doesn't contribute as much energy consumption of, say, a car, but it is true that for people who use them a lot, a computer can burn through the watts. Like the "green car" movement, we now seem to be entering the "green computer" era of consumer electronics.

With that we have CherryPal, an upstart computer company focusing on green computers and a fruity name to boot. Relying on "cloud computing" (a term for low energy chips) from Freescale, 4gb of flash memory, some USB ports, and not much else. Apparently CherryPal hopes to have a cheap and functional computer when this goes to market, but has not showcased the power of the computer. At only 2 watts of energy consumption, even if this buggery doesn't run well, it's users can feel morally superior to everybody else around them. Well that's what really matters anyway.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

CherryPal to Launch Two-Watt PC Using Freescale Processor Based on Power Architecture Technology

Tuesday June 17, 9:01 am ET

New Line of PCs to Be the Greenest and Most Affordable on the Market

ORLANDO, FL--(MARKET WIRE)--Jun 17, 2008 -- FREESCALE TECHNOLOGY FORUM -- CherryPal, Inc., a new PC maker, will reintroduce the Power Architecture® technology to the personal computer market with the forthcoming launch of its CherryPal cloud computer -- the most energy efficient and affordable computer available. The CherryPal uses 80 percent fewer components than a regular PC, has no moving parts and consumes just two watts of power. Weighing just 10.5 ounces, the CherryPal is ideal for anyone who wants a no-hassle, no-software upgrades, no-virus computer experience.

"The CherryPal PC is inexpensive to buy, inexpensive to operate and saves people the aggravation of managing increasingly complex operating systems, not to mention dealing with viruses," said Max Seybold, C.E.O., CherryPal, Inc. "Cloud computing has always made sense on paper; CherryPal is the first product that delivers on that promise to consumers."

The CherryPal is powered by Freescale Semiconductor's mobileGT® MPC5121e processor, a Power Architecture technology-based chip that enables ultra-low power consumption at 400 MHz operation.

"The advent of the CherryPal PC will help accelerate the emergence of cloud computing as a preferable alternative to traditional application-intensive desktop and laptop PCs," said Mike Bryars, manager of Freescale's global Infotainment, Multimedia and Telematics Operation. "Freescale's MPC5121e is an ideal processing platform to help drive the shift to easy-to-use, green computing solutions like the CherryPal PC."

The CherryPal features:

-- Freescale's MPC5121e mobileGT processor, 800 MIPS (400 MHz) of
-- 256GB of DDR2 DRAM
-- 4GB NAND Flash-based solid state drive
-- WiFi 802.11b/g Wi-Fi
-- Two USB 2.0 ports
-- One 10/100 Ethernet with RJ-45 jack
-- One VGA DB-15 display out jack
-- Headphone level stereo audio out 3.5mm jack
-- 9vDC 2.5mm 10 watt AC-DC adapter power supply
-- 10.5 ounces
-- 1.3" high, 5.8" x 4.2" wide

About the Freescale MPC5121e processor

Freescale's 32-bit MPC5121e processor, built on Power Architecture technology, is the latest member of Freescale's mobileGT processor family. Manufactured on 90-nanometer low-power CMOS technology, the MPC5121e device is designed to deliver exceptional multimedia performance and feature-rich user interfaces within a low power envelope, without sacrificing flexibility and robustness.

The MPC5121e processor is built around an efficient triple-core architecture consisting of a Power Architecture core, a 3-D-graphics processor core and a CD-quality audio processor core. The powerful 3D-graphics processor is engineered to provide a graphics pipeline capable of gaming-class 3-D rendering while keeping the DRAM bandwidth requirements to a bare minimum. The triple-core MPC5121e architecture is designed to allow the costly distributed DRAM memory systems within a PC to be merged into a single shared DRAM memory system.

CherryPal is a new company founded and headed by serial entrepreneur Max Seybold and is backed by Voras Family, based in the UK, and Tristate Limited, a Hong Kong-based private equity group. The CherryPal will be available in Q3. Pricing, software and additional features will be given at that time.

About CherryPal, Inc.

CherryPal makes personal computing environmentally friendly, user friendly and affordable. Its headquarters are in Mountain View, Calif., with offices in the United Kingdom and Hong Kong.


For more information, please contact:
Tara Sims
415 310 5779

CherryPal announces two-watt, Freescale-based cloud computer

Posted by Jo on 06/19 at 08:52 AM

It looks like the current ranks of green PCs are soon going to have some pretty daunting competition for the low-power throne, with upstart CherryPal announcing that it’s about to bust out a cloud computer that’ll consume a mere two watts of power. To hit that mark, CherryPal opted for Freescale’s new 400MHz MPC5121e mobileGT processor, and eliminated all the moving parts normally found in a PC, which means no optical drive and 4GB of NAND flash memory in place of a regular hard drive. Otherwise, you can expect to get 256MB of RAM, built-in 802.11b/g WiFi, two USB 2.0 ports, an Ethernet port, and a VGA port, with a “tweaked version” of Debian apparently serving as the OS. No word on a price just yet, but the company is boldly proclaiming that it’ll be the “most affordable on the market.”

About CherryPal for Everyone (CP4Every1 or CPFE)

CP4Every1 is constantly crawling the web (on human hands and knees) to find unique information of value regarding green technology, cheap and reliable connectivity, personal, portable and sustainable industry developments, future and social/cultural transformative technology, political relevance and news that is NOT just another re-posting of the same press release pushed out by the industry.

Please note that all copyrights and links to original material are provided and respected. NO robots were used to post content.

Your comments are invited.

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