This is a condensed form of the article originally published on the Visual Azure site. It's part of an effort to explain technology concepts using visual vocabularies, including sketchnotes!
Recently, I came across the Microsoft 2020 Environment Sustainability Report and had a chance to check out this review of the progress made towards the sustainability goals that had been laid out in the Jan 2020 announcement from Microsoft leadership. I had already decided I wanted to spend more time this year in understanding environmental issues and sustainability solutions in both tech and community contexts. And I needed to start by understanding basic concepts and terminology.
Thankfully, my colleagues from the Green Advocacy team in Developer Relations had recently released a Microsoft Learn Module covering the Principles of Sustainable Software Engineering. So I did what I always do when I want to learn something and retain that knowledge in meaningful ways for later recall -- I sketch-noted it!
The Big Picture
As a visual learner, I've found that capturing information in one sheet helps me grasp "the big picture" and make connections to other ideas that I learn about in context. So here's the sketch-note of the module. You can download a high-resolution version at the Cloud Skills: Sketchnotes site, and read a longer post about what I learned on my Visual Azure blog.
The module describes the 2 core philosophies and 8 core principles of sustainable software engineering.
Let's start with the core philosophies:
Everyone has a part to play in the climate solution
How I think about this:
As for the 8 principles, this is what I took away from my reading:
This is a high-level view of those principles each of which is described in detail in its own unit. I highly encourage you check the course out after reviewing the sketch-note.
Why does this matter to us as technologists? I found the Sustainability site to be a good source for educating myself on how these challenges are tackled at scale, in industry.
Microsoft has set three objectives for 2030:
A fourth goal is to be biodiverse and use technology to protect and preserve ecosystems that are currently in decline or under threat. And this is where technology initiatives like the Planetary Computer come in, helping researchers collect, aggregate, analyze, and act upon, environmental data at scale to craft and deliver machine learning models for intelligent decision-making.
The bottom line is that we all have a role to play, and educating ourselves on the terms and technologies involved, is key. I hope you'll take a few minutes now to review the sketchnote and complete the Principles of Sustainable Software Engineering on your own. It's time to be butterflies and drive collective impact with our individual actions!
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