Monday, August 27, 2007

Are Heavy Metal Websites Good For The Environment?

A few weeks ago I was thumbing through a magazine and a small headline caught my eye. It said that there was a black version of Google called Blackle.com. Since I use Google almost exclusively, and I prefer websites with black backgrounds, I immediately went over to the PC and typed in the url. There it was, as the magazine said, a black version of Google. My favorite search engine in my favorite color. My first reaction was to post a link to it in the Shout Box on the WMA Heavy Metal Forum, because at first glance I saw it as a metal looking version of Google. Guess I just equate black with heavy metal.

After I posted the link, I wanted to know who made it and why, so I went back to Blackle and clicked the "About" link. I figured somebody just did it because it looked cooler in black. Or maybe because a darker web page is easier on the eyes. But I was surprised to find out neither of those reasons were listed and that the real motive behind it was to save energy.

Seems someone had proposed a large amount of energy could be saved if a high volume site like Google used a darker background. This was based on the fact that a CRT monitor uses about 20% less energy to display a page with a dark background than a light background. The basic concept was that if a high volume site switched to a darker background that savings would be multiplied by the number of users. The more users, the greater the savings.

Anyway, after reading the About page and finishing up some other work on the PC, I returned to the WMA Heavy Metal Forum before logging out. I found that a few members had already commented on the link in the Shout Box. Apparently they had also read the Blackle About page, because they were pointing out that the WMA website also saves energy and is "green" since it also has a black background. I laughed about it at first, there were a few reasons the WMA website is black, but being "green" and saving energy were never on the list. Even though that was never the intention, based on the above theory, it turns out to be true. Every time a member or visitor views the WMA website on a CRT Monitor, the black background and dark page uses less energy.

That's a drop in the bucket compared to Blackle, but what if you multiply it by the millions of other heavy metal websites, forums and blogs on the web. There's almost an unwritten law that heavy metal websites have a black background. In fact I've only seen one heavy metal site that didn't, but it was still a dark color. And although most of them don't realize it, their widespread preference for black backgrounds is actually helping to save the planet. Heavy Metal, good for the environment. I doubt anyone would've ever guessed it was possible, but it apparently it is. Too bad Kermit The Frog wasn't a metal head, then he would have known what we all now know - it is easy being green.

3 comments:

Jason said...

That's awesome. I feel even more honored to post at the WMA because of the environmentally friendly backgrounds! Thanks for saving the planet Minister!

ginnnnsane said...

lmao!

Earth said...

There are around 18 different versions of black google online. The best one Ive found is www.cleanblack.com. Cleanblack is the only version that allows you to change the text colors of the google search results. Try it yourself by going to www.cleanblack.com/theme/