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Laura Marks "Small File Movies" Notes and Citations

  1. This calculation, based on electricity consumption of data centers, networks, and production and use of devices, is contentious. I use the estimate of Anders Andrae in “New Perspectives On Internet Electricity Use in 2030,” Engineering Applied Science Letters 2020, 3(2), 19-31. It is revised from an often-cited higher estimate of 21% in 2030 in Anders Andrae and Tomas Edler, “On Global Electricity Usage of Communication Technology,” Challenges 6 (2015): 117-157. A good overview of these calculations can be found in Steffen Lange, Johanna Pohl, and Tilman Santarius, “Digitalization and energy consumption. Does ICT reduce energy demand?”, Ecological Economics, 176 (October 2020) 106760.
  2. My colleagues are IT engineers Stephen Makonin and Alejandro Rodriguez-Silva and media scholar Radek Przedpełski.
  3. John Pflueger, Gary Verdun, Alyssa Caddle, and Maureen Martinez, “Dell 2020 Energy Intensity Goal – Mid-term Report.” White paper, 2017.
  4. An article on which industry supporters rely, Eric Masanet, Arman Shehabi,
    Nuoa Lei, Sarah Smith, Jonathan Koomey, “Recalibrating global data center energy-use estimates,” Science 367: 6481 (February 28, 2020): 984-986, is desperate for government-subsidized technical innovations like “quantum computing, materials for ultrahigh density storage, increased chip specialization, artificial intelligence for computing resource and infrastructure management, and liquid and immersion cooling technologies” to prevent an exponential rise in data center energy consumption after 2024, so that the market can keep expanding.
  5. Here’s a calculator for your carbon screening footprint:
    Length of the streaming video in hours
    x gigabytes per hour:
    480 pixels: ~792 MB/hour
    720p: ~1.3 GB/hour
    1080p: ~1.9-2.55 GB/hour
    1440p: ~2.8 GB/hour
    4K: ~3.5-7 GB/hour
    x energy intensity, 4.91 kWh/GB
    x number of unique viewers
    x 0.007 metric tons of CO2 (in countries relying on 80% fossil fuels)
    = carbon footprint. For an explanation, see Laura U. Marks, “Calculating and Mitigating Our Streaming Carbon Footprint,” Media and Environment (forthcoming), and http://www.sfu.ca/~lmarks/blog/
  6. Gilles Deleuze, Cinema 1: The Movement-Image trans. Hugh Tomlinson and Barbara Habberjam (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1986), 73.
  7. Laura U. Marks, “I Feel Like an Abstract Line,” in Mirror-Touch Synaesthesia: Thresholds of Empathy with Art, ed. Daria Martin with Elinor Cleghorn (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 151-176.
  8. Thanks to Stephen Makonin for pointing this out.
  9. Gross, like Pham, was influenced by my essay “Video Haptics and Erotics,” Screen 39:4 (Winter 1998): 331-348.
  10. Tom Gunning, “Moving Away from the Index: Cinema and the Impression of Reality,” Differences 18:1 (2007): 29-52.
  11. Adrian Mackenzie, “Every Thing Thinks: Sub-representative Differences in Digital Video Codecs,” in Deleuzian intersections: Science, Technology, Anthropology, ed. Casper Bruun Jensen and Kjetil Rödje (New York and Oxford: Berghahn books, 2010), 146-150.
  12. Hito Steyerl, “Proxy Politics: Signal and Noise,” Duty-Free Art: Art in the Age of Planetary Civil War (Verso, 2017), 47-66; Sean Cubitt, Anecdotal Evidence: Ecocritique from Hollywood to the Mass Image (Oxford University Press, 2020)