Local Cooling has just passed over 1 million kWH saved! That’s an amazing milestone. It translates to almost half a million gallons of oil or about 53,000 trees saved. Nice work for a simple, free application.
Here’s some background on the site/application:
localcooling.com is home to a windows-only utility that can be downloaded onto your computer to help you manage and reduce the amount of energy you use. Here are screenshots:
The truth is, this is exactly the reason why people buy Macs in the first place. Windows is too complicated — and worse, it’s so buggy that people are afraid to change any of the default settings for fear their whole computer will simply blow up anyway. So they never change anything they don’t have to.
This little application is simple, easy to install and use, and even gives you “feel good” feedback, like telling you how many trees you’ve saved.
When was the last time Windows help you save some trees and then told you about it?
The real problem I see is in the competitive nature of the teams vying for first place in energy savings. It seems like that would encourage you to keep all your computers running as much as possible in order to ‘rack up savings’. It’s a bit like telling someone ‘the more you spend, the more you save!’ at a 50% off sale.
So now we could have companies all over the world turning on all their computers and letting them run 24 hours a day so they can report their savings back to localcooling. Yeah, that’s smart.
The application should probably be modified to take into account how much of the time your computer is turned off as well. Then, we’d really see who is saving energy — that is, if you ever turned the computer back on so it could upload it’s savings data.