Kathy Malone is a Green Developer
Carl and Richard talk to Kathy Malone about green computing. Kathy, who has a day job as an environmental engineer, talks about different types of green behaviour, including turning off PCs over night, using suspend mode and the like. But for developers, there are approaches to building software that consumes fewer resources, both electrical and human energy. Is there an additional price in resources to be paid for touch computing?
Kathy Malone was on the TechEd Panel in 2008 re Green and Sustainability, which was when virtualization and the increasing efficiency of large data centers was the focus (something most of us can do nothing about except be aware of and make the greenest/most sustainable choice feasible for our circumstance). She did a track on Green and Sustainability at WinConnections in early 2009, and gave talks on Green and Sustainability at Code Camps and SQL Saturdays during that timeframe ("What Green and Sustainability Means to (Fill in the blank): Architects, Developers, SQL Professionals). The key concept of these talks was "Be It, Build It, Live It" for whatever segment of the business you were in. "Be It" referring to building green and sustainable aps (per above); Build It referring to building aps supporting the topic, and Live It referring to each everyone's personal choices on the matter. She submitted an abstract to the Architect Journal on Green Architecture in the Enterprise at the Application Level: Knowing What is the Same and What Is Different Across Your Users (And Why) Can Save You a lot of Green. She started GreeNTUG, a virtual user group for the topic, which had a few meetings, and as the economy turned down, interest seemed to wane.
Starting with BUILD and at other Microosft technology-based conferences since, the topic seems to be front and center again; at the SharePoint Conference, there was a Birds of a Feather session with almost 30 attendees, many talking about their successful company initiatives with respect to Green and Sustainability (conventional topics, recycling, energy reduction) and how they use SharePoint as a tool to support the activities, not much awareness/interest there re building greener/more sustainable apps.
Kathy Malone has been the Solution Architect (and CCABW, "chief cook and bottle washer") for a Microsoft Access and SharePoint-based Environmental Health & Safety application that first printed hazardous waste manifests in 1984 (Micrsoft Access 1.0 was the 5th rebuild of the application).
She is an Environmental Engineer by training and jokes that Environmental, Health & Safety professionals are the "plumbers of green" ("our day job is to clean up the wastewater…"), but with a very practical orientation.
Since 2005, she has been closely following the various new Microsoft technologies with an eye to migrating selected portions of the Access ap to "managed code" and has also been following design initiatives associated with the Microsoft stack (MIX, etc). She is also involved in the community in the areas of BizSpark (facilitates a BizSpark group and does talks on starting and running your own business at Code Camps), Women in Technology, and Green & Sustainability.