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Eco-friendly computer concepts to go green with technology

by DrPrem Jagyasi
Sustainable-computer-‘Froot

You can measure the technological progress of human civilization by taking a look at their most sophisticated computer. However, apart from making us more advanced, these computers also do their share of damage to the environment. That being said, there are a number of innovators who want to precisely control this aspect of computers. They want computers that are not only technologically superior to their predecessors, but they also put minimal stress on the environment. Their love for both technology and environment pushes them towards creating innovative eco-friendly computer concepts.

15 Eco-friendly Computer Concepts

The ‘go green’ concept has found its way into the field of electronics as well, including computers. Many manufacturers around the world are equally doing their part to bring in a change. One of the ways that they are contributing to the green movement is by developing eco-friendly computers and laptops in order . Check out this list to see seven of the most innovative eco-friendly computer concepts and designs.

1. The recyclable paper laptop

 The recyclable paper laptop

In the recent times where the green side of technology is so prominent, the recyclable paper laptop is one amazing concept.  In this concept, the use of packed layers of recycled papers and pulp materials shows how innovative a human mind can be.  Another good thing about this laptop is that you do not have to worry about replacing the broken parts of the laptop. This is because these parts are replaceable. Furthermore, you can easily recycle the broken parts as well. This is why this laptop is a perfect addition to eco-friendly computer concepts.

2. Sustainable computer ‘Froot’

Sustainable computer ‘Froot’

The next name in the list of green computer models is the Froot. This laptop was also part of the Dell Regeneration Green Computing Technology Contest. The body of the laptop is made from biodegradable starch based polymers. If you want to dispose this laptop, you can easily do so as the parts of the laptop are recyclable. It is also equipped with a high-end laser and project screen apart from a fully functional keyboard. This laptop reduces the need of a screen a keyboard as you can easily convert the laptop into a screen when you need one.

3. The solar laptop

The solar laptop by Nikola Knezevic

Nikola Knezevic’s solar laptop may look a bit weird but does have various eco-friendly computer concepts under the hood. The design of this laptop gives you the flexibility to fold it whenever you want. The screen and keyboard is attached to a solar panel, which also helps to charge the laptop. With this laptop by your side, you do not have to worry about your energy bills since you can let the solar energy do its job.

4. The EVO PC Concept

The EVO PC Concept

Another perfect example of the green side of technology is the EVO PC. This eco-friendly laptop consists of two parts the EVO client module that sits atop the second part that is the docking unit. With low RAM, processing power and memory, the client may not look like it has much to offer. This may not look like a computer at first glance. With low RAM, processing power and memory, the client may not look like it has much to offer. You can plug it into the remote EVA server (via the base unit’s broadband connectivity feature). This will allow give you a computer that works remotely and sends back data to the client.

5. The LOOP Desktop Computer

The LOOP Desktop Computer

Dell’s LOOP is a perfect example of the different green computer models the company has to offer. It comprises of recycled parts that is upgraded regularly.  Another beautiful aspect of this laptop is that you can rent out the laptop regularly with the latest changes. Just in case any part breaks, you can take it back to the company for recycling. This helps to reduce the carbon footprint to a largely. The no-screw design enables the assembly of the laptop once again within a minute.

6. The Life Book Leaf Laptop – a range of unique eco-friendly computer concepts 

The Life Book Leaf Laptop

The eco-friendly design of the laptop comes along with an OLED touch screen. The interesting part about the design is that you can spread it and fold it back whenever you want. The polycarbonate exterior case makes it very shatterproof and optically sensitive as well. This laptop was also a part of the Fujitsu Design Award.

7. Iggulu Modular PC Concept

Iggulu Modular PC Concept

Upgradable parts, customizable system and other such innovative features, the Iggulu Modular is a unique green concept. This is recyclable laptop also gives users the facility of an activated online account. This account allows the customers using the Iggulu Modular to get the necessary replacements. The service module comes complete with color-coded modules for hard drives, optical drives, RAMs, PCI drives and graphic cards.

8. Hand powered Mitra PC

PortablecomputerinIndia_11

Mitra, which means ‘friend’ in Hindi, is an eco-friendly portable computer. The clamshell PC is cylinder-shaped and is intended to provide computing to farmers in rural India. The PC concept boasts of a built-in LED projector, solar charging interface and a hand cranking mechanism that would allow users to recharge the battery when an electrical outlet isn’t close by. We don’t think it supports Angry Birds but the green gadget would surely ensure that real birds get to have a future on the planet.

9. Lawn PC

Lawn PC is a green computing concept

The Lawn PC is a green computing concept which comes with its own independent power generating unit. Featuring modular 3”x 3” squares, the design of the Lawn allows individual components to be detached and upgraded which is very recycling friendly while the power generation unit allow the unit to generate 876 KWh of power that would have otherwise been supplied from the fossil fuel generated grid power.

 

10. O Project Dell personal computer concept

O Project Dell personal computer concept

Featuring a host of eco-friendly features, the O Project PC concept comes with recyclable components that can be recycled. However, the best aspect of this computer concept is that it would come with a “skin” manufactured using bamboo and cornstarch polymers. This skin would be completely biodegradable and allow users to safely dispose of their old computers when the model gets obsolete.

11. Igglu modular PC concept

Igglu modular PC concept

Designed to maximize resource and energy efficiency, Igglu Modular PC concept focuses on allowing users to easily update their computer systems without having to worry about the waste that such an upgrade usually involves. Thanks to its modular construction, the Igglu can be fitted with new hard drives, RAM, graphic cards, PCI drives and optical drives when an update is needed while the old modules would be easily recycled or reused by the company in budget-friendly units.

12. Power Flower PC concept

Power Flower PC conceptBy far the most innovative green computer concept in existence, the Power Flower PC Concept proposes the use a hydrogen fuel cell instead of the traditional Lithium-ion battery which is kind of environmentally unfriendly to manufacture. The concept also does away with regular PC components like cables, peripherals, physical sockets or other power sources and comes only with a microphone and a speaker on the face camera and a projector that allows any flat surface to be used as the display.

13. EcoPad

EcoPad

What’s new?

EcoPad is a self powered tablet that uses the piezoelectricity film below the touchscreen. This film traps mechanical stresses and synthesizes them to produce energy. Therefore, it doesn’t require a power source of charging outlet.

What difference will it make?

This product is designed in collaboration with FUJITSU and traps mechanical energy to charge the tablet. Therefore, it doesn’t need any recharging as it gets its energy from human touch. Such technology can bring huge difference into the world as it is sustainable and environment friendly and doesn’t require any electrical energy to operate.

Problems

The device has no charging outlet or another power source. Therefore, if the film doesn’t work then the product wouldn’t operate as mechanical stresses and touch provides it the energy to operate. Moreover, the technology is still in its infancy. It requires to be experimented in natural settings.

14. Tiny Self powered computer

Tiny Self powered computer

What’s new?

This computer is a 9mm Solar Sensor that is not just the smallest computer in the world, but it is also the only self powered computer. This computer has an ARM processor, solar cells and tiny battery.

What difference will it make?

This tiny computer is eco friendly. It harness solar energy to power itself. Therefore, it doesn’t uses any non-renewable source of energy. A small device like this can make a huge difference to the environment and save it from degradation.

Problems

Firstly, this computer is really small. Although it is self powered and consumes lesser energy, yet it is not functional. One cannot use this computer on regular basis. If the same technology can be integrated into an average size computer than it will be more useful and functional.

15. Solar Panel powered Laptop

Solar Panel powered LaptopWhat’s new?

This is a wireless laptop which is eco-friendly and sustainable. It is a self powered device and uses solar panels to charge itself.

What difference will it make?

This laptop can take the market by storm. Solar panels can charge the laptop. This means that the laptop is sustainable and avoids environmental degradation. At the same time, it makes laptop usage a hassle free experience, which makes it more user friendly.

Problems

The technology is useful. It can only face problem in cold areas where the sun isn’t visible for days. In such areas, the laptop won’t work.

Let’s hope that these technologies see the computers market in near future. All of these technologies have the ability to bring a change in this world and make a difference.

How to go online with computers and save environment

There are some things you can do which can help to save the environment. You may be concerned for the environment but you don’t have the time to go out on the streets to chant slogans with other activists. But you can make a difference every time you work on your computer. You can do that by modifying your work habits or updating the technology which you use.  Check out a few things, which can help to save the environment while you’re online:

1. Email everything

Email everythingEmail has made communication faster and easier. You can email anyone anywhere in the world and receive a reply in seconds or minutes. You can use the email to subscribe to your favorite newspapers and magazines, reducing paper waste. You throw away the newspaper after reading only once, so a lot of paper (and thus trees), can be saved by subscribing online rather than to the paper.

You can email your marketing material, instead of printing leaflets or brochures. You’d save money and resources by emailing your ads. It also gives you the opportunity to personalize marketing material which would give you a better chance of getting a response from your client base. So, going online has many positive points, apart from being good for the environment.

You can send season’s greeting through email, instead of cards or postcards. 

2. Work online

onlineThis is the best way to conserve paper. You can do all your work on your computer, including doing your research, writing online, saving your files online in the cloud. With the advance of the cloud technology, you no longer need to buy extra hard drives to save your important files, nor do you have to take numerous copies of prints. In fact, most people are transferring their business to the cloud, so that their information is accessible always. You can also do that to make accessing your information more convenient, as well as saving hardware and paper.

3. Work from home

Working-from-Home-Working from home is now a viable solution for most employers and employees. Most companies make their data available to their employees online, which enables and facilitates work from home.  Commuting leads to greenhouse emissions which can be avoided by working from home. If you are an employer, you save on office infrastructure costs if your employees work from home, and your targets can be met just as well from home as from office.

Also, if people conserve their time and energy without the hassle of commuting, their productivity levels also go up, leading to better profitability. 

4. Pay your bills, read books online

Pay your bills, read books onlineThis will save both paper and fuel, as a lot of paper is saved if bills are raised and paid online.  Reading e-books and listening to audiobooks is a great alternative to paperbacks. The printing of books involves a lot of chemicals, so you save paper and reduce chemical pollutants by reading online. 

5. Be proactive

post videosIf you feel strongly about the environment, you can do your bit sitting at home too, through your computer. You can sign petitions online, support and spread the message of wildlife and conservation organizations. You can post videos and informative articles on social media. The more people know about eco-friendly initiatives, the better it is for the planet. You can email your concerns to your congressman or policymakers which can make a positive difference to drafting eco-friendly policies.

6. Donate your computer’s processing power to research

 medical-researchYour computer’s processing power can be used for the benefit of research. IBM’s initiative has connected millions of computers all over the globe which has allowed researchers to compute a huge amount of data to come up with results for their studies. Donating your computer to medical research can help scientists to discover new medicines for diseases.

 7. Use the Notepad

Use-NotepadWhen you’re working online, use the Notepad software to write notes, instead of a paper notepad, or sticky notes. Your research and your ideas and concepts would be conveniently organized on your computer, ready to be used when required.

Going online is a great way to contribute to saving the environment. It saves paper, fuel and when you are proactive, you’d have the satisfaction of doing something worthwhile for the environment.

DNA computing: Another helpful technology

Scientists are making attempts to use DNA and enzymes to create a self-powered molecular computerScientists are making attempts to use DNA and enzymes to create a self-powered molecular computer. This computer will be a biochemical that will work like a living body, creating its own energy and monitoring its conditions. Scientist Ehud Shapiro and his colleagues have been working over this technology. They try to tap the energy which is released when a DNA section is broken. The energy released will be apparently trapped by a handy enzyme. This enzyme will also cut DNA input molecule in specific places and free the energy required to power the computer. This will be the first step in the field of biochemical computers.

Over the past 30 years, DNA molecules have been used to build nanoscale structures and devices. DNA is the basis of any biological entity. The potential applications of DNA in creating advanced structures can serve as a helpful tool that may allow development of several new technologies. DNA synthesis and sequence design can help in creation and invention of several devices and gadgets, even a biochemical computer that may be able to understand the genesis of human body and treat ailments.

Summary on eco-friendly computer concepts

Many companies have started developing green computer concept ideas in order to contribute to the green movement. Independent designers too have churned out quite a bit of concepts and ideas, which are an excellent way of seeing where the future of technology is heading.