I have never really understood the appeal of second life. Don’t really like the esthetics and never really got the concept of hanging out in some fantasy world that makes no sense whatsoever (if you really need that you should probably just head over to dubai). Now i have been musing about energy consumption here before, but if it is really true what this number crunching blogger writes, the playing second life is not only stupid but outright sick:
If there are on average between 10,000 and 15,000 avatars “living” in Second Life at any point, that means the world has a population of about 12,500. Supporting those 12,500 avatars requires 4,000 servers as well as the 12,500 PCs the avatars’ physical alter egos are using. Conservatively, a PC consumes 120 watts and a server consumes 200 watts. Throw in another 50 watts per server for data-center air conditioning. So, on a daily basis, overall Second Life power consumption equals:
(4,000 x 250 x 24) + (12,500 x 120 x 24) = 60,000,000 watt-hours or 60,000 kilowatt-hours
Per capita, that’s: 60,000 / 12,500 = 4.8 kWh
Which, annualized, gives us 1,752 kWh. So an avatar consumes 1,752 kWh per year. By comparison […] the average citizen of Brazil consumes 1,884 kWh, which, given the fact that my avatar estimate was rough and conservative, means that your average Second Life avatar consumes about as much electricity as your average Brazilian.
This pretty much places people who play second life in the same league as those who drive SUVs in urban environments.