Most companies that rely heavily on technology infrastructure to drive their revenue or services measure metrics such as the energy and water those operations consume, along with the carbon dioxide emissions that's associated with them. PUE is a fairly common concept.
Nelson positions DSE as the next potential breakthrough for technology-centric companies. To that end, his team has published a whitepaper describing many of the concepts that went into developing the methodology over the past three years.
"Through sharing the methodology and its results, eBay hopes to stimulate a larger conversation on how measurement can drive the tuning of technical infrastructure for improved business value," Nelson's team notes in the whitepaper.
Although the variables that companies might use for DSE obviously would be different, the methodology behind the metric boils down to these four considerations:
- Determine the top-level digital services that are delivered to customers.
- Quantify the energy consumer for each of those services.
- Establish the appropriate "currencies" that should be used to express the measurements. The "IT currency," for example, would be the number of watts consumed by equipment.
- Figure out which variables matter most for balancing cost, performance and carbon footprint associated with each service.
Green Grid is holding working sessions to debate and refine the DSE formula so that it might be used by other companies much in the way that PUE developed over a five- or six-year period with contributions from many different companies, Nelson said.
"We know this one will be heavily discussed and debated," he said.
Click here to watch Nelson's presentation about DSE at the recent Green Grid technical forum.
Photo of eBay's dashboard provided by eBay