Daily TIPs: Noisier Hybrids, the MySpace Debates, Energy Bubble, & More

8/6/08

Internet Deluge Not Likely, Study Finds

Some Internet service providers are worried that the growing demand for large files, such as videos, is going to produce more data traffic than the Internet can handle. But one Internet expert says traffic growth rates are actually falling. Ars Technica reports that Andrew Odlyzko of the University of Minnesota’s Internet Traffic Studies project says “there is not a single sign of an unmanageable flood of traffic.”

Presidential Debates Head to MySpace

MySpace will create a portal for people to watch live streaming of debates between the presidential candidates, at the request of the Commission on Presidential Debates. TechCrunch reports that the portal will be accessible to anyone, whether they have a MySpace account or not, and will include real-time polling. The first debate is scheduled for September 26.

Is There an Alternative Energy Bubble?

Hundreds of millions of venture capital dollars are being directed to alternative energy startups, and a writer at CNET News argues that’s a sure sign there’s a bubble forming in the alternative energy market. The writer, Steve Tobak, says it might not be the biggest bubble, and it may not be near bursting, but he thinks there are more energy companies being founded than the market will be able to sustain.

Companies Tackle Power-Hungry PCs

Personal computers are responsible for 40 percent of the carbon emissions attributable to information technology, according to the research firm Gartner. So Microsoft is joining with the non-profit Climate Savers Computing Initiative and a Seattle-based startup, Verdiem, to look for ways to save energy in PCs. The New York Times reports that the group is providing free software to help PC users find ways to use less energy.

Technique Would Make E-Cars Noisier

If you had any thoughts of sneaking up on your enemies and running them over with a nearly silent hybrid car, forget about it. Lotus Engineering, which makes active noise management systems to keep it quiet inside the car, has developed a system to produce artificial engine noises and make the cars safer for pedestrians. Edmunds.com says the company has made a demo model of its “Safe and Sound Hybrid” using a standard Toyota Prius.

Obama Promotes Hybrids, Renewables, Conservation

In a speech at Michigan State University, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama laid out his plans for the country’s energy future. Earth2Tech bullets some of the highlights, including a call to put 1 million hybrid electric vehicles on the road by 2015, get a quarter of the nation’s energy from renewable sources by 2025, and find efficiencies that cut demand for energy by 15 percent by 2020.

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