Wednesday 28 September 2011

Data Centres

Last night I visited the new SCC data centre at Tyseley in Birmingham. 17 BCS DCSG members turned up for what was a very entertaining talk and visit.
At the moment there is no national engineering standards for data centres in the UK although the EU Code of Conduct for Data Centres EU Code of Conduct is considered by the BSI to be as they state "which, whilst not a formal standard, is the most advanced good practice to date.
I'm lucky enough to be on the "best practices" committee for the EU Code of Conduct, this means that we review proposed changes to the code from all the participants prior to the publication of the new "best practices" every November.
In fact some of my colleagues are in Ispara in Italy right now attending the lastest update meeting.

Green IT standards are being discussed by the BCS Green IT group in committee and we hope to have some proposals out soon.
If you have any views on any of the above please leave a comment and I will try to address them.

Tuesday 27 September 2011

Our Travel Policy

As you'd expect Carbon3IT Ltd takes its environmental obligations very seriously, so we'd thought we take the opportunity to outline our travel and hotels policy.
First off, we're based right next to Hatton Station so rail is our preferred option.
I normally get a service from Hatton if the timetable permits, if not then the wife will drop me at Warwick Parkway. This allows me to work on the train on the way to almost anywhere, the only trip I've made where this was not an option was to go to Swindon. From Hatton, this is a tedious trip, Hatton to Leam takes about 10 mins, Leamington to Banbury about 20mins, Banbury to Oxford or Didcot Parkway about 20 -25 mins, Didcot Parkway to Swindon about 20mins, its never enough time to get the laptop out and get down to work, so I normally bring something to read!
If timetables, venue or arrival time is an issue or if I've got stuff to carry (like my demo kit) I'll take my car.
Its a Smart Car, a four two, 695cc turbo charged little beast, it costs me £35 a year to tax, about £400 to insure and takes about £30 of fuel to fill her up. I get about 300 miles on this.
If we have to use a hotel, and I can done so recently in Amsterdam, I try to use Conscious, these are hotels that minmise their environmental impact, conscioushotels.
Otherwise, if I'm in London I spend some time with my Mum, she lives a short 20 mins train ride from Charing Cross.
Oh, and one more thing, I've flown twice since I started this company, both times to Amsterdam. I've taken the ferry to Dublin due to Volcanos, and once to Amsterdam due to a late meeting meaning I couldn't take a flight. That was quite an interesting trip, left a BCS meeting, jumped a train to Harwich, got the overnight ferry to the Hook, you get a cabin and the facilities on board are really good, much better than the last time I went when I was 17! I went to the meeting and then back on the train for the overnight ferry back to England.
The cost £140, not bad considering I had two nights in excellent restful accommodation and excellent transport links on both sides of the ditch, although the dutch side does have better trains throughout. The service from Harwich to Liverpool Street is very tatty.
Anyway, I'm about to get into my smartie for a short trip to Birmingham, the reason for it is that the trains back to Hatton are about an hour apart late at night.

The Wedding

We had our own royal wedding last weekend, my brother got married to his wonderful girlfriend and a great time was had by all.
Thats it for the wedding.
So, we gave another talk at the BCS Coventry branch last Wednesday, less questions than at the BCS Birmingham branch but Coventry is my "home" branch so most of the people know all about Green IT anyway, because I make sure of it :o)

We have a DCSG event tonight at the SCC Data Centre in Birmingham, this was fully booked up very quickly and I'm sure it will be another great occasion.
This week, there is the UKITA AGM and the BCS Green IT AGM.
Its a very busy week, followed by another busy week, followed by yet another, still I'd rather be busy than sitting at home playing games.

Friday 16 September 2011

Stag Night Part 2

Almost forget to update.
Well, after the go-karting we all went back for the next evening's festivities, the groom was dressed as Batman, a friend of his was the Joker, and a very good joker he was too! The rest of us, were wearing black and had masks, we were the Joker's henchmen.
We managed to get to 2 comedy events, Bob and Jim (ok) and the Scottish Young Comedians of the Year (very very good), we then went to a club next door. After a good few beers we went home.
You may wonder why this post is so short, what happens on stag, stays on stag!

Thursday 15 September 2011

A fantastic couple of weeks to report.

Its been great over the last few weeks, lets see.
It started with No 1 daughter going back to school, so after a short rest to get over the school holidays, I was invited to meet up with a very special organisation to discuss a secret project.
I had to send most of last Wednesday writing up my draft proposal for them that was submitted the following day: If we get the project then I'll be busy for about 6-8 weeks possibly more, then who knows.
Then last Friday I had breakfast with Sir Peter Rigby, a well known local business man who owns SCH, the Mallory Court Hotel (where we got married) and Coventry Airport. I must stress that this was in the company of about 100 other delegates at the Wright Business Club. Sir Peter has started many businesses and is on the executive board of the Coventry & Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership.
Then, the Rugby World Cup started and although England and Ireland both won they did make heavy going of their respective games, still the tournament is only one game old so theres plenty of time to get into top gear for the finals. I must say that Wales had a very good game against South Africa and i'm not sure that the team that won actually did, still I'm not a ref!
I then travelled to Bracknell to speak to NetIQ about a potential project with the CWLEP, more details will be provided soon. Later that evening was the BCS DCSG AGM, I was elected onto the committee, well not so much elected as approved without a vote :o). Mark Acton of the Tier 1 Institute gave us an overview of the Tier systems for data centres and laid to rest some misconceptions some people have about this rating system. We then had an overview from a chap from Fujitsu about their London North data centre that is an accredited Tier 3 Facility.

The Hopton, god bless that man, basically twisted my arm to go with him on a kareoke mission in the Roadhouse, Covent Garden. And hes only gone and won it!!
The prize was a £100 bar tab,to be consumed that night, between 2 of us!!
Suffice to say that a great time was had by all, although Hoppy rang me at 8:45am and just said "Ouch", "Ouch" I said, you 're still in bed, I'm on the DLR going to meet someone very important.
Anyway, you'll be plesased to know that I made my appointment, signed the contract, had the run through and I'm now just waiting for the project to begin.
I then made my way to Warwick to prepare for my speaking engagement at the BCS Birmingham branch later that evening.
Which I am pleased to say went down a storm.
I'll be giving another Green IT Talk at the BCS Coventry branch next week on the 21st September, more information can be found on the Carbon3IT news and events page.
Yesterday, I presented an update on the energy data collected so far at the WMG, the information is confidential so I can't tell you what it contained but we have identifed that energy can be saved.
I have another meeting with the University next week to discuss where we go from here.
Tomorrow I have been invited to the Coventry & Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce event in the morning and early afternoon, and then its the school BBQ in the evening.
I am duty dawg at the weekend as the wife is exhibiting at the Birmingham Motorcycle Museum Craft Fair so we'll be off for a breakfast at Hatton Top Lock Cafe, followed by a play in the park before a restful afternoon watching sport, well one can wish eh?
Very busy next week too, but due to the nature of the business there will not be an update until the following Monday.
Enjoy the weekend.