Earth Day: Where’s My Solar Netbook?

Earth Day: Where’s My Solar Netbook?


Today is the day when people wear their organic cotton t-shirts, drink from their stainless steel tumblers, and bike to the office rather than drive. It’s Earth Day, so we’re all taking a closer look at the impact that we have on the environment around us and our fascination with gadgetry is no exception.

I’m certainly no expert in the field, but I have a question for all the netbook manufacturers out there: why haven’t you created a solar-powered netbook? I understand that solar panels may not generate quite enough power to keep a netbook running all day long, but even a slow trickle charge could be worthwhile.

Think about it. If you’re hanging outside your favorite coffee shop on their patio, surfing the web on your netbook, the back lid is constantly facing the sun’s rays. The whole time that you are reading Mobile Magazine and checking out Twitter, your netbook’s battery could be getting a little bit of extra juice.

What about when the little laptop is in your bag, you may ask? Well, there are already backpacks and other types of bags that have solar panels fitted to the outside. These too can push a trickle charge of electricity toward your netbook. With the right kind of power management and exposure, you will remarkably reduce your need to plug into the wall.

Of course, we should be looking at the bigger picture too. It’s not just about power consumption. We have to consider the environmental impact of building, shipping, using, and ultimately disposing of our gadgets. Solar netbooks could address one part of this equation.