God Didn't Make Apple a Little Green...

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astro_rob's picture
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Came across this via Lowendmac...

http://www.macworld.co.uk/news/index.cfm?home&NewsID=11372

Okay, I appreciate their concern (I was a treehugger in my youth), but come on!
I think we ought to Slashdot 'em...

Rob

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.

I bet more wintel PC are throwen away than macs

I mean come on what do you want would want an orginal Mac 512k or a 286 noname?

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But Apple is a much higher pr

But Apple is a much higher profile with its customerbase being much more into the enviroment than say the average Gateway user.

If those tree huggers were to protest Dell or Gateway, probably nothing would be paid any attention to them.

Silly tree-huggers.

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Dell and gateway both have po

Dell and gateway both have policies in place regarding waste disposal. Thats half there argument is that other companies did it so apple should.

Anyhow it makes sense, someone has to deal with the amount of waste that the computer industry puts out. They short life cycle of computers just excellerates the amount of waste. Apple should have an agreement with their retailers to dispose of waste that can then be returned to an apple store ... if its an apple ... How much profit did apple make last quarter? And what about the packaging sold with every iPod, its not exactly minimalistic.

Id their improved their image, theyd have another selling point!

A pain i know, but necessary it is

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You Make Good Points...

One thing to keep in mind, though, is that the manufacturers that have already signed on with the Computer Takeback folk sell, and have been bigger contributers to our local landfills, sell "mass-market" systems; let's face it, fellow Mac-heads, we be the minority. I'm not saying Apple shouldn't sign on, I just think we need to look at this critically for a moment.
There are items that get "tossed" everyday that pose as big a risk, and for almost one hundred years, automobiles have slowly been accumulating in dumps all across this great planet. Imagine telling GM they have to buy back their Suburbans.
Any car built since 1980 has a good number of electronics, and they became even more so after the various fuel efficiency standards that passed during that decade. Now, you have vehicles that have more electronics then you find in an average household; computer engine modules, DVD players, CD/AM/FM stereos, on-board navigation systems, et cetera. All of those goodies do not prevent it from becoming obsolete, and when it does, there is only so far you can take the recycling. Furthermore, some of those behemoths get poor mileage, exacerbating our fuel woes.
Even large automobile parts can only be taken so far in recycling. While you can gut many vehicles of their electronics et al for their metal, an increasing number of them use plastic, which is far harder to recycle. And let's face it... pound per pound, there's a lot more waste in a Chevrolet Geo than in a Macintosh II.
But why stop there... let's try to persuade Walmart into taking back all of the cheap electronic goodies they sell. That one company sells more, much more, pollution-causing electronics than Apple, perhaps a hundred times over. I could go on...
My point is this. When you buy a computer, you own the computer. Aside from any warranty program you may have purchased, the computer, if well made, simply is not the manufacturer's responsibility once it leaves their store. You have not leased the machine, therefore the manufacturer can only go so far. It becomes the buyer's responsibility.

Peace,
Rob

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Re: You Make Good Points...

astro_rob wrote:

It becomes the buyer's responsibility.

The problem is that most buyers wont be responsible. This is not only apple, its as you say wal-mart and any other company that sells electronics basically anything. When you finally ditch a computer do you pay a computer recycler to deal with is as best they can? If you do i would bet 90% of the market would not. If this was a cost factored into a new computer so that the recycling of this computer would be free in the end would more people end up recycling. It would no longer cost you anything to deal with it. I think the group has decided that apple would be a good tarket because of the publicity (as mentioned)

What is different in the case of computers over some goods is the very short life they hold. Many people update there computers atleast every 3 years and the value of the old box has deceased a lot. In the case of cars they maybe be replaced after 3 years but they hold a lot more value and will probably continue to be on the road for 20+ more years and are then nearly always sent for parts or scrap because they still hold value. The parts are reused as much as possible. Electronics in the cars have only recently got complicated enough and computerised so it is probably that this issue hasnt arrived in the publics mind yet. Computer recylcing only comes up now because computers have been going to waste for 10 years now and so in 10+ years when the cars electronic pose a large threat only then will it be that the issue is confronted by the public i believe. Maybe at this time computer recycling will have sorted it self out and so computers from every source would be added to this list.

Everyone needs to change, not only apple.
maelgwn

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Aye, That's The Rub...

You hit on the problem, right there: "Everyone needs to change, not only Apple."
Maybe the reason I see this as much ado (can't shake Shakespeare today...) is that I grew up poor and on a farm. We used equipment until it simply could not be used any further. Look at my signature - the newest computer in it is four years old. My primary Internet machine, a PC sadly, is almost ten years old. I think it absurd that computers go obsolete at this rate. We know why this happens, all of us, and yet we continue to contribute to the problem.
There are a number of reasons that computers "age" so fast. It's easy to say that the Internet is a big cause, but one of the biggest problems, as I can see, are the major OS manufacturers pushing the upward envelope on system requirements. Let's say that your computer gets bumped up in speed to, say, 2gHz. The OS it's running right now is running just fine. But, in order for your computer to do even more, you need a newer OS. Without exception, almost every improvement in an OS results in its requiring more of the system's resources. OS's are not becoming leaner; they're bloating. Bloated OS's require newer systems, ad infinitum ad nauseum.

"We have met the enemy, and he is us..."
-Pogo

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Apple OS -> New Hardware

Sometimes I wonder if apple updates their OS and makes it only run on newer computers just so that we go out and buy new hardware. The hardware makers make better hardware that then the software makers right software so that the hardware sells the sw and the sw sells the hw. Basically what you said.

Also something I know i can be guilty of it always wanting the newest gadget. People always see the new product and say look and that wow and may then buy something that they dont really need or will use but they just add to the waste.

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Numbers Game

Thinking about this issue as a whole, you can see the message that they, CTBC, are trying to make; all manufacturers need to be responsible. The timing is, of course, perfect, since Apple had their shareholder meeting the same week as Earth Day. Not even a thinly veiled political message.
What I question is the number they threw out. That's an awfully large number, 10.5 million, even counting Apple's total output from 1977. If the older computers were going to end up in a landfill, chances are they are already there. This smacks of psychic dyslexia ("I have a bad feeling that the Hindenberg is in trouble..."). Since Apple reorganized, their profitability may have risen, but the actual numbers of computers they've produced have fallen back a little; they streamlined.
I'd have to check my numbers, but one can't help but feel that these numbers are a little cooked...

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RE: Numbers Game

Thats close to 400 000 units a year, which considering that includes every year since 1977 is very unlikely. I have no idea how many products apple ships ... anyone know?

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What a load of crap. Apple o

What a load of crap. Apple owns and operates one of the largest recycling centers in the Silicon Valley. They take all sorts of PCBs, plastics, metals, and glass, as well as the neighborhood recycing pickups for the city of cupertino and all the waste from San Jose airport (ever see 4 cubic meters of swiss army knives?) Every office has a container for recyclable paper and the confidential trash is also recycled. Every building also has multiple containers for glass and metal to go to recycling. They even pay people extra if they walk or ride their bike to work.

I have never in my life seen any large company more aggressive about protecting the environment and recycling than Apple.

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Right On!

Nothing like a healthy dose of reality. Thanks for the info, Dr. Bob!

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Apple Responds
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It's kinda interesting that t

It's kinda interesting that they use a quote from my local city paper (KC Star) about using the iPod be cause it's so hip and visable. I'd think some CA Valley area paper would have a good quote...

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