Science and Technology

Why do my computers not sleep anymore?

Sep 13, 2023
'A Sofa', Albert Joseph Moore
‘A Sofa’, Albert Joseph Moore

In the old days, a person could turn off their computer, or phone, and it would be off. This was so obvious that we never questioned it.

With the seeming weekly updates to Windows OS over the last three years, I have found that my various laptop batteries are running out very fast when the machines are turned off, or put into “sleep” mode. Why does “sleep” require so much battery energy? And why is off not really off?

Has anyone else noticed that all actions on the computers cause the OS to slow down, every mouse move recorded and sent up to the central brain, every key stroke, every file opened, the time dwelt… all the data being recorded and sent up to the central system. I have not bothered to check this theory with Wireshark or some other traffic or OS monitor, because it is just obvious to me as I am using the devices.

Study for a figure in Burne-Jones' Briar Rose series
Study for a figure in Burne-Jones’ Briar Rose series

This rush to 24/7 surveillance has led me this year to switch to a “privacy” linux laptop. My choice was PureOS, So far I am happy with it. Though I do have my share of diving into install packages. (

'The Briar Rose' Series, 1: The Prince Enters the Briar Wood from Sir Edward Burne-Jones
From Burne-Jones Briar Rose series

Tonight, after leaving the coffee shop, I turned off my PureOS linux laptop. When I got home a few hours later, and took the thing out of my back pack, it was hot, clearly hot because the device was working the entire time. Working on what?

There is an idea that after every civilization is birthed and grows up, then it just unwinds mechanically, becoming more and more ossified, and it is very difficult to resurrect, to make young and flexible again. Some notable exceptions are how St Francis of Assisi re-vivified the catholic church, and how Socrates/Plato re-vivified Greek culture centuries into their decline. Our culture, when did it start? Perhaps in 1776 with the birth of America. Perhaps later in the mid 1800’s with the application of electricity & magnetism. Wherever you place that birth, it seems that the routes are solidifying into mechanization, tracking every last action, categorizing people and speech, loss of sex & sweat & spontaneity.


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