I've just been provided with a wireless broadband card by my employer, which is great! However, I've suddenly become acutely aware of how much bandwidth I'm consuming using different Web-based applications and applications that tap into Web-based services. On a couple of occasions I had used a MB of data without really doing anything.
So far I've used over 50MB of the 500MB/month provided in the data plan and obviously I want to minimise excess usage if possible. Unfortunately the wireless broadband connection software only reports total incoming and outgoing data traffic, so I installed the freeware version of NetLimiter 2 to see if I could get a better idea of what was going on. As result I've made a couple of changes to the applications I'm using and will monitor the impact on my usage:
- I've created a new connection profile in Lotus Notes so I could configure the mail client to only download the first 40K of each message - I've also stopped the automatic replication of the address book;
- I'm going to start using the mobile version of Google Reader (I made the mistake of using the offline feature but then realised that unless I read every feed it downloads, then it was actually more wasteful) - however, for the longer term I'm also considering moving to a desktop RSS reader; and
- I'll switch from Twhirl back to using Twitteroo when I'm connected on wireless broadband for Twitter.
Twhirl was a surprise, but the numbers appear to speak for themselves - Twitteroo used only 22KB to grab the list of recent tweets from my public Twitter profile (I have a private CSC profile too), while Twhirl consumed nearly 330KB for both profiles when it started. Twhirl is a lot more feature rich of course, but at the moment minimising bandwidth utilisation is more important.
(Hmm. I wonder how much this post used?)