back to article Yes! It's the cardboard PC!

Green is the new black, or so it seems. So an enterprising designer’s inked plans to build a desktop PC that does away with the traditional metal and plastic exterior, in favour of… er… cardboard. Recompute_01 Recompute: sports a cardboard body The Recompute PC would – if it ever makes it to the shops – have a body …

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Duffer...

Nice Idea to use cardboard but a bad design! It looks to me like whole concept evolved around soemone realising theres holes in corrugated card! and then trying to use that principle as little chimineys hence you get a massive stack of cardboard about 500 layers thick with a tonne of glue. and a tonne of waste cut outs from each internal sheet.

Just use a NORMAL folderd box with some holes in.. Just remember to take the tortoise out first!

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Doh....

Erm, cardboard is somewhat less recyclable than the conventional steel cases - it takes a lot less contamination for cardboard to become un-recyclable than with steel. That's before you even start thinking about EMC and CE requirements!

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Wow

I really want one! More specifically I want the case... this thing is very cool.

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Don't let HP see this

Who knows what will happen if they try putting a cardboard PC in a cardboard box....

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Static?

Wouldn't a cardboard container be a static risk?

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Flame

which is worse...

(1) the prospect of the thing going up in flames

(2) that some well-meaning soul cleaning your house will throw away the pile of cardboard sitting on your desk

(3) that the dog or cat will chew on your cardboard PC

(4) that the first time you spill coffee on your desk you will need a new case

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Paris Hilton

Isn't that wrong ?

The "This end up" icons on the last picture imply that it it were set in it's "vertical configuration", the narrow end of the base would be at the bottom, with the heaviest component (Power Supply) at the very top of the case ... seems rather precarious.

Paris: She can go bottom's up with me any time.

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Fire risk

If any of the cooling fans were to fail you'd have a significant fire risk. Probably not such a good idea.

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Pointless gimmick

So, it's basically an oversized laptop with a very large case considering the functionality. The case isn't sold seperately - because it's just a gimmick and they can't make any profit on it.

The idea of a flatpack cardboard case isn't necessarily a bad one, assuming the ventilation can be sorted (probably not, as cardboard is a much better insulator than aluminium or steel).

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Flame

I like the idea but if the power supply fails as they do, will it go up in smoke with your house?!

Great idea, but I've seen a few power supplies fail in my time and smoke and melt, all it would take would be 1 hot ember to potentially set the thing on fire! That said though it's a neat idea and I like it.

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I wonder if the "designer"....

..has actually considered real world practical issues like its fire-resistant properties?

We have heat, dust and electricity. The potential for mishap is obvious

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Humm....

So they remove the easy to recycle metal part and forget about all the nasy stuff in the chips and PCBs...

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Flame

Can anyone smell burning?

Why aren't hifi and TV cases still made of wood I wonder?

Flame Icon ofr obvious reasons!

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Coat

Too Hot

You could very easily turn a PC like this into a firewall!

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But what about the environmental cost...

Of the fire extinguisher that would have to be kept handy. PC hardware occasionally makes smoke, but in a standard steel case it hardly ever makes fire. Maybe this thing could be fitted with an automatic extinguishing system, as used in aircraft and racing cars, but the cost (financial and envronmental) would be higher than than the old tin box. Also, the thing can't be robust enough to stand much in the way of cleaning, maintenance or upgrading. I wouldnt want to open it up too often or wipe it down with a damp cloth.

Chances are it would be scrapped earlier than a standard PC, just because it was starting to look a bit ratty. Not green.

If you want to be green, stick new kit in your old box 8-)

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Happy

"... all the usual PC components"

... er, no. Where do the PCI, AGP or PCIe cards go? I don't see any holes to get at stuff you've installed. Then again, a bit of modding with a stout pair of scissors might just do the trick. Probably not covered under the warranty, though. :)

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Anonymous Coward

Don't the french call their computers "le box"?

Or la boîte?

Does that constitute prior art?

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Stop

Missing something?

Surely anyone who is this tight-fisted will have considered the option of reusing a free cardboard box from the recycling bin instead?

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Anonymous Coward

So

Where is the metal shielding to stop the radio interference from the box?

Don't think it will be CE compliant without it.

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I'd rather have

a cardboard box to be fair. Current metal ones always give me nasty cuts. That said, corrugation = insulation, and a spilt drink = carnage.

Just make robots that hoover up the dust from inside the case, pretty please?

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Silver badge

RF interference

Computers live in metal boxes to prevent radio waves from getting out and messing up your (neighbour's) TV. Unless the box is lined with foil and the edges carefully sealed, someone is going to find out about EMC laws the expensive way.

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Anonymous Coward

Fire Hazzard

and it doesn't come in black :)

Nice idea though, perhaps the card board could be treated, or the idea extended to wood.

The problem is the heat though, that is why metal is used.

Oh I know, cigarette carton computer, that cardboard is treated against fire as far as I know, let me check ....

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Paris Hilton

Other "green" stuff

I also found this on Engadget, with a slew of other supposedly "Green" gadgets.

My problem with the majority of them is the underlying power consumption of the devices themselves. For example, the "Power Hog" will pull power when idle. The "Power Plugs" will as well.

The later would be more problematic as its popularity grows. There is already much concern over the 9W of power my entire entertainment system uses when "off" -- 32" CRT, DVD player, VCR, and amp -- I can imagine the concern when we essentially put a few "wall warts" in each and every new home.

Just some thoughts.

Paris, became more problematic as her popularity grew.

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Publicity Seeker

I rather suspect that this is a bit of nonsense concocted to gain publicity. Firstly corrugated cardboard is a dreadful material iff the intention is to keep components cool. By the standard of these things, it's a fairly good insulator. Indeed it's a choice of last resort for the homeless. Secondly, what about electromagnetic interference shielding (unless, like plastic cases, they are using a metallic coating). Thirdly, most desktop cases are metal which is much more robust, perfectly re-usable and much safer. Fourthly a corrugated cardboard case is not much protection for delicate electronics, either in purely mechanical terms or from accidentally coming into contact with quite small amounts of liquid. Fifth, just how much of the energy content and engineering effort goes into the construction of a PC case rather than its inards, power supply and so on? Given the lack of expandability of this thing for disk bays and so on, then what's the point of the desktop format? Stick to something like a Shuttle - smaller, neater, more robust and, I would suspect, ultimately more "sustainable".

Nope - I think this is just somebody seeking some publicity which, reading around the Internet, many tech news websites appear to have fallen for.

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Happy

I'd buy one

I like the concept, but if he could make it look like a pizza box it'd be cooler :-)

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Flame

Cool

That actually looks cool, and isn't such a bad idea either in terms of recycling.

Though if something goes wrong, you may just literally get smoked. :)

Flame, well.. paper and heat.

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Stop

Which way up?

Unfortunately, the "this way up" logo is correct for is in desktop configuration, but would render it upside down when in tower configuration...

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One word - Fire

And when your CPU gets a little warm it burns your house down ?

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Coat

Erm...

To meet FCC/CE regs the cardboard is going to have to have a metal film stuck on it, so it isn't going to be recyclable. And the metal case of a PC isn't exactly the hardest bit to recycle anyway.

So we have a PC that isn't going to last as long (soon as someone knocks over a coffee) has the same toxic parts on the MB and replaces the only currently recyclable part!

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Did it years ago

Built an old 486-25 into a cardboard packing box for a laugh.

Wonder how the RFI compliance is.

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Anonymous Coward

CE Approval

Good Idea, but CE approval they may have to coat the inside with shielding.

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EMC!

As someone who has thrown way too many old PC cases into the metal scrap bin, it's a nice idea, but it would almost certainly have to be lined with tinfoil to get theough electromagnetic emissions requirements.

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Jon
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hmmmm

"Ooh, four... I mean five... I mean fire! "

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fire hazard?

not sure i'd want a processor that has a cutoff set at 85 degrees C, inside a load of highly flammable paper.

Admittedly they don't often get that high, but when my heatsink got matted with fluff my pc went up to 75degrees. The warning beeps were a handy reminder to clean and reseat everything.

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Nothing new

My first home built PC was incased in a cardboard box, all parts scavenged from old PC's, eventually I felt it would be better to use something less flammable. :)

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Anonymous Coward

what if...

... the power supply burns out and smokes or a cheaply made usb sets on fire? does the box come fireproof for x'amounts of minutes?

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Coat

How big is the shipping container?

After all cardboard is quite fragile so it will need a big reinforced box to prevent it getting squashed by the postman. I know, you could use the metal box you're not using for the PC.

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Soggy Card

So if you spill your drink over your desk your nice new cardbaord pc will happily absorb the liquid.

Then once the Card has enough i am pretty sure the electricity wuld be more then happy to travel around teh card thus makeing the thing live. lol

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Coat

Sorry

Are those USB memory sticks sticking out of the top, or highlighter pens?

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Yeah, that'll help.

Replacing what is probably the most recyclable part of the PC anyway.

Doing something about being able to recycle the myriad different substances within would be properly useful.

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Unlikely

It is a nice idea but I doubt it would pass EM emmision restrictions to be commercialy used

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Anonymous Coward

What a loony idea...

I thought half the point of a metal case was to mitigate EM interference etc? Doesn't cardboard insulate pretty well, and what happens when you spill your coffee on it?

Cardboard computer case, right up there with the inflatable dartboard and chocolate teapot.

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Flame

Eugh

Unfold, refold and drink 'till she's pretty.

Might be green, might catch fire, but without an apple logo I can't see it catching on.

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A fire waiting to happen

The fire bridgade will be busy when this one catches on and subsequently catches fire.

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Go

reminds me of...

... the old atari consoles in wood!

WANT!

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Oh dear. Another designer who bunked off the physics class

So corrugated cardboard will help with ventillation? Only in the same way double glazing does - it's a few mm of air trapped in a long rough-sided tube. Go ask a tramp what they prefer for a winter night's doss: plastic sheeting or sturdy corrugated cardboard box.

And by the time you've dosed it with enough fire retardent & stiffening it'll probably be 100% unrecyclable too.

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Why are we making items that should be long-lived into throwaways?

PC cases ought to be made from sturdy metal, so that the machine can have a useful life of 10 years+ Even if the innards die, the case can usually be re-used for the next one! So this is a really inappropriate place to use cardboard. Built-in obsolescence?

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Flame

Heat + cardboard?

I daresay it's well thought through, but what happens when some component or another goes wrong? I've had a PSU go bang in the middle of the night (interesting to be awoken by a blue flash and a smell of burning), not sure I'd have wanted it in a cardboard case. As Basil Fawlty might say "Fire........ffffffire........FIRE!!!!"

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Emissions?

And how would a cardboard PC meet EM emissions regs?

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Where will it end??

http://tinyurl.com/c7hav7

http://tinyurl.com/d62knk

http://tinyurl.com/bfykw5

http://tinyurl.com/cmctbu

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