15-290 / 19-211 Computers and Society

Homework 8 - due April 12, 2005

Reading assignment:
Quinn 8
Disposition of Personal Computers
Challenges: Environmental Design for Pervasive Computing Systems
The environmental effect and waste management of computer manufacturing

1. A developing country is building out community based Internet kiosks for a whole plethora of services (Internet access to e-commerce, e-Governance, etc.). They propose to use a pre-paid card for managing transactions. Describe two issues related to privacy or authentication that the system designers should consider, and briefly explain how these issues might be addressed.

2. (a) Identify two ways CMU could change it's computing-related practices to be more environmentally friendly. (b) Select one of these changes and perform a simple analysis to determine what the environmental impact would likely be if this change was made by a particular department or in a particular computing cluster (for example, how much energy would be saved or waste reduced over a given time period?). Make sure you explain how you did your analysis, where you got your numbers, and what assumptions you are making. (c) Are there any downsides to making this change (for example, increased costs, inconvenience, etc.)? Explain. (d) Are there any benefits to making this change beyond the environmental benefits? Explain.