Google has reportedly admitted that a single Google search engine query uses 1,000 servers in 0.2 seconds.
The admission by Google fellow Jeff Dean, in a keynote session at WSDM 2009, may alarm those campaigning for greener datacentres.
According to Jeff Dean, while both search queries and processing power have gone up by a factor of 1,000 over ten years, latency has gone down from around 1000ms to 200ms.
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Another significant change, said Dean, has been holding the complete search index in memory. This has resulted in 1,000 machines being used to handle a single query, compared to just 12 previously.
This revelation may be embarrassing for Google, which has defended its ecological record in the past, claiming a single Google query takes just 0.0003KWh of energy and that its datacentres are the world's most efficient.
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