A new whitepaper from Microsoft Research and a computer scientist from the University of Virginia suggests that server architects, which the researcher call “data furnaces,” could offer a lower carbon footprint in certain scenarios, particularly home offices or office buildings.

They theorize the servers could put out enough heat to become a primary heating system for these buildings, if connected into a building’s existing heat distribution systems and duct work. Therefore, instead of worrying so much about how hot data centers are, we would work harder to redirect their heat where it could actually be useful.

How do you feel about this idea? Do you think this is Ripe, and you expect office buildings and home offices will be heated by data centers, or is this just Hype?

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