Green Computing - Approaches - Software and Deployment Optimization - Algorithmic Efficiency

Algorithmic Efficiency

The efficiency of algorithms has an impact on the amount of computer resources required for any given computing function and there are many efficiency trade-offs in writing programs. Algorithm changes, such as switching from a slow (e.g. linear) search algorithm to a fast (e.g. hashed or indexed search algorithm can reduce resource usage for a given task from substantial to close to zero. A study by a physicist at Harvard, estimated that the average Google search released 7 grams of carbon dioxide (CO₂). However, Google disputes this figure, arguing instead that a typical search produces only 0.2 grams of CO₂. More recently, an independent study demonstrated that Windows 7 + Office 2010 required 70 times more memory (RAM) than Windows 98 + Office 2000 (the dominant word processing platform of 10 years ago) did to write exactly the same text or send exactly the same e-mail.

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