MFA Interaction Design at the School of Visual Arts

IN/VISION

We may fail to recognise that the information we receive actually devours more and more electricity as our digital lives grow.
—Greenpeace

Canary

Canary is a mobile application that tracks and offsets your digital carbon footprint.

http://canaryinthecloud.com & http://coalbutton.com

There is an unsaid promise of the cloud: as we move from physical to digital products and documents, our environmental impact is lighter. However, our production of digital content is exponentially increasing every day. To house this growing data, we are building a vast physical infrastructure that depends on non-renewable energy resources.

This infrastructure comes in the form of data centers – the factories of the Information Age. Similar to the massive structures of the Industrial Age, we are again building systems that are out of balance with the amount of energy this planet has provided. We have an opportunity to create our supporting physical infrastructures sustainably and utilize renewable energy resources. Yet we are missing that opportunity.

The goals of Canary, as well as my other thesis explorations, are to educate users about the problem space, create actionable tools, and call for a set of standards to build a sustainable infrastructure upon, both by the industry & consumers.