IT Ecodesign : the new best practices

IT Ecodesign
The idea of ​​an IT ecodesign software and web appeared in 2007 generating new best practices respectful of our environment.

How IT Ecodesign influences the work of the developer ?

One of the most important tasks of the developer is the continuous improvement of its code so that its application is fast and fluid in order to satisfy the customer and indirectly consume as little energy as possible. Today, 3 billion Internet users worldwide load a web page in an average time of 6.5 seconds . Imagine the energy consequences if developers do not maximized their code , not counting the constant efforts of countries to improve network performance .
So here are 15 eco-friendly practices from the book Eco-design 100 best practices web.

Customer code : using interactions when absolutely necessary .

1- Write effective JavaScript code: storing a reference to a DOM element in a variable , you avoid traveling the DOM every time you need that item so you save CPU resources.

2- Validate the JavaScript code: use JSLint , an online validation tool , which will ensure understanding of your script by all browsers .

3- Maximum use of stylesheets : to change the appearance of a DOM element , it is preferable to use a CSS class containing all the changes rather than making these changes via JavaScript .

Apply the principles of simplicity and sobriety all throughout the software lifecycle .

4- Keep only the necessary functionality to the user: during the design phase it is very important to prioritize the different features according to their necessity. Avoiding develop features that will be rarely used , and you limit the weight of the application and prevent the process of obésiciel (bold software). The impact will be twofold: a better load times and ease of use .

5- Adjust the number of search results to the user’s needs : Microsoft Research has saved 80% of the server-side power consumption by avoiding displays 20% of results on its Bing search engine.

6- Create a simple user interface by limiting the features you also reduce the user interface to its simplest ergonomics. Non overloaded page appears faster. Important information will be much more visible and impactful .

Selecting a technology and architecture closer to the application requirements .

7- The solution will be more low-level , the less it will stack of software layers consume resources . Three levels can be distinguished for a dynamic website:

  • Custom development
  • Custom development on top of a framework
  • CMS

Optimize stylesheets .

8- Factor out the styles in one or more CSS files. This will avoid transporting several times the same styles between the server and the browser. They will be stored in the cache.

9- Write efficient CSS selectors using the ID ‘s or classes . They will be filtered faster.

10- Minify CSS libraries prior to production with the YUI Compressor tool. Spaces, comments and jumps unnecessary lines will be removed.

Optimize queries on the database.

11- A request must be as accurate as possible . No interest retrieve all fields from a table if used one.

12- Limit the number of returned results ( seen above). Each unnecessary data from the database will be processed by the application server , transported over the network , restated by the browser , etc.

13- When possible , use stored procedures much more efficient than SQL queries.

14- Store the query results in the cache or variables to solicit the least the data server for the same needs.

Optimize images .

15- Internet users connect more and more via mobile devices , the weight of the images of your website must be well thought out. A few useful tools to reduce the weight of the images : pngcrush , ImageMagick and jpegtran .
IT ecodesign is still young , many application and website do not yet apply these principles. Developers are eco-friendly !


Conseiller en insertion professionnelle et Concepteur développeur web. Passionné de l'image et du tir sportif.

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