Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Vista Will Eliminate Your Vistas

Generally I'm not one for posting the same story twice in a row but the environmental damage from Vista is all over the press. The sound bites are telling - GBN called the resulting environmental damage "massive", BAN claimed it was a "digital dump" perpetuating the "digital divide", the UK Green Party mentioned that "Future archaeologists will be able to identify a 'Vista Upgrade Layer' when they go through our landfill sites." Harsh light.

Microsoft has already shored up a defense against the environmental claims which is telling in and of itself. They told letsrecycle last night that "nearly all PCs on the market will support Vista". Is this legerdemain? Are they referring to existing PCs, or new PCs you can buy right now? If the latter, it's probably true, but if the former, then it is almost certainly inaccurate. For example, one study found that half of the existing PC base couldn't run Vista. They have also responded to the Green Party, claiming that they are "doing their best to improve their environmental standing." Ok, but Computer Aid thinks 10 million PCs will be scrapped as a direct result of Vista. And while I did see plenty of references to Reuse and Recycle, the biggest R - Reduce - was completely absent from the article.

The first big company to announce full conversion to Vista will get hammered in the press for being unfriendly to the environment, and the press will be right. From the green perspective, Vista is poison. Touch with care.

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