Blackle… Is it the new Google?

25 07 2007

 Do your bit for the environment!

I stumbled across a little nugget in a friends profile last night, that I found truly remarkable.  In theory the idea is certainly plausible, and it’s not going to be too difficult to integrate it into my everyday life.
In fact, I already have, I used it last night to search for a link for my “Out and about in the big smoke” blog posting.

What is it?  Keep your knickers on!  I’m getting to it.

Everyone’s heard of and in most cases uses Google on a regular if not daily, and in my case, often multiple times daily to do web searches.  What would you say if I told you there was a way to continue searching for items on the Internet, but in a method that saves energy?  AND, that the more people that use it, the more energy globally is saved?

Oh I know!  I’m excited too!  At the time of typing this 112,458.737 Watt hours have been (allegedly) saved.

The application is “Blackle“, it’s just like Google, only black.  Sounds pretty obvious, but here’s the deal.  By not lighting your screen up “white” you’re apparently saving power.  In my mind, I’m thinking that the displayed black is still not a “dead screen”, that it is in fact a colour being used, but the logic still seems, well… logical!  I’m no scientist, lead me to the facts and I shall drink from them.  But as for you…  I’ll leave it up to you to decide.

My only issue, and it’s a minor one, is that currently there’s no facility for an image search, or language translation.  But surely that’s easy enough to fix, or it’s actually there and I’ve not seen it yet.  If I was doing the PR for it, I’d just smile sweetly, fix it, then claim that the link was there the whole time, but unfortunately the text colour was Black, on a black background, so while being TOTALLY environmentally friendly, it wasn’t entirely helpful.  Tongue in cheek, but an explanation.  Then fix it as fast as possible! LOL!

The official information or “About Blackle” is as follows (directly from their site):

How is Blackle saving energy?

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.

How can you help?

We encourage you to set Blackle as your home page. This way every time you load your Internet browser you will save a little bit of energy. Remember every bit counts! You will also be reminded about the need to save energy each time you see the Blackle page load.

Help us spread the word about Blackle by telling your friends and family to set it as their home page. If you have a blog then give us a mention. Or put the following text in your email signature: “ – Saving energy one search at a time”.

There are a lot of great web sites about saving energy and being more environmentally friendly. They are full of great tips covering the little things that we can all do to make a difference today. Try Blackling “energy saving tips” or visit a great blog dedicated to environmental awareness.

For purposes of readability, I’m sticking to black text on a white background.  But if it makes you feel better, I typed this post with the light turned off…  and it’s pretty dark at the moment.  (Shhh, I typed this post last night, but post-dated it to save myself the effort today/tomorrow… you know what I mean.)




8 responses

25 07 2007

l know how to save ENERGY, TURN OFF THE COMPUTER !

25 07 2007

… and then you’d complain I’m never around to talk to 😛

25 07 2007

I’d like to save energy by working from home, but my new boss frowns upon it. unless, of course, the work involves me getting paged at 3am, then it’s fine if I work from home.



25 07 2007

ROFL to Mum… and good come-back Craig, so true.

I read somewhere though that Blackles theory only works with CRT monitors and that LCDs actually use more energy to produce Black than White… or maybe I’ve got that round the other way… All I know is that it was good in theory but has been hit on the head by some as being little more than a PR stunt.

Is always good though to look into ways to save the world, she needs a little saving right now.

25 07 2007

(*)> Funny… I suspect I may have worked for your boss in the past too!

Jamie… I don’t think the theory is too accurate either, but hey, it was a blog posting just waiting to happen. 😉

3 08 2007

I prefer using as their text are green which reduce eye strain. So instead of saving energy from our monitor, it also save our user’s eye energy.

11 09 2007

Yes, there are several things going on with blackle, but people tend to forget that there is more need of user interactivity then the stupid blackle itself.
Now the age is of VIDEOS users are not going to shift from google to blackle just like that. There is a site named that gives the option to search videos as well as as the regular web search. I think I would bookmark this site , because it gives the option to see any video in the same page without moving your ass!

10 02 2008

i like the blackle concept!!!! recently while surfing i also found Blackle games; interesting concept: play games and save the world!!. WHat we really need to do is to stop being lazy and actually do our own work and reduce using machinery and wasting resources.

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