Friday, August 24, 2007

Caveat Emptor

My father called me a few minutes ago, introducing his point by saying that mere cellphone chargers have the potential to suck electricity when plugged to an outlet, even without anything connected on the other end. Upon mention of this claim, my fears were confirmed: He found out that my computer was on, happily downloading while I was away.
So he proceeded with what I expected - He told me that even computers, when left on, take a considerable amount of electricity to stay on. I did not bother to react, even as he asked me how to turn the computer off. Considering the level of technical knowledge my father had, combined with the fact that uTorrent and AVG combined slowed my computer down considerably, I decided to tell him the basic step to make life easier for both of us: Pull the plug (Or, in this case, turn the power supply off).
I'm glad that my power supply has a lighted orange switch.
At the time I was quite perturbed by these claims. Not that I doubt my father, but it raised a concern which I thought could be disregarded. Is it really a big deal?
After the call, I tried asking and looking around for what other people think about keeping their computers on in relation to their electricity bills. I mentioned my situation: 1 Desktop Computer downloading, LCD monitor off the whole time. The majority of people told me that I wouldn't be adding too much to the electric bill, but I still had doubts.
So I went to the internet. I found this site:
Lots of facts here, but I didn't go through the computations. What disturbed me was the chart plotting what factors eat up more energy and less energy. Apparently a 'Ready to be used', 'Desktop' 'PC' 'On the Internet' 'Heav(ily) Used' uses up a significant amount of energy.
This also brings me significantly closer to complying with the advise of my dad. Ah well. I guess I'd have to keep it on while he isn't around to hear the computer fan running across the Master's Bedroom. AND I'll need to have a few bucks ready to chip in just in case.
The computer just HAS to be on for a long interval at one point. One thing I learned ever since I got DSL: If you were ever denied of your childhood, you can always download it.
If any of you are thinking of upgrading to a High-Speed Internet Service, do not overlook the supplementary charges besides the cash you're giving the ISP.

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