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Office Depot Wants to Recycle Your Old Computer

michael posted more than 9 years ago | from the spring-cleaning dept.

Hardware 546

IcerLeaf writes "CNN reports that Office Depot will happily recycle one old electronics item per customer, per day, from July 18th through September 6th. Qualifying electronics include computers, monitors, printers, scanners, fax machines, digital cameras, cell phones, and TVs 27" or smaller. Office Depot and Hewlett Packard will be splitting the bill. What's coming out of your basement?"

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stuff owns us (4, Interesting)

digitalsushi (137809) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688723)

Two winters ago I had finally hit a breaking point of cruft. 11 computers weighed my personal space down, sparc servers and stations, sgi indigo2s and dumb terminals, countless x86 machines in varying states of decay. Sounds like you? In a panic, I updated my slashdot sig announcing that my lan was for sale, more of a joke to myself, a poke at my own sloth. Amazed at an almost immediate response with a serious inquiry, I reconsidered my offer and realized, "why not"? What had that pile of crap done for me? It caused me anguish, it made me think every single night coming home from work, "one of these days, I'm going to clean this place up". And so I went ahead with it, and sold everything on my lan for 400 dollars. I got 1 new machine with it, and 10 months later, an ibook (with other money) I haven't looked back since. In that time I've started, and completed, many of the mundane backburner projects that were always on-hold for seemingly forever. My point to this post is, if you haven't used a thing, and are keeping it because you think you might, why not just get rid of the thing (and this, a chance to do it properly, and for free!) and not let it vex you, sitting idle in the corner, calling out to your procrastinations ... (admittedly, 2 of the 3 boxes i mailed were lost or destroyed. the third, the cables, was received a-ok. the buyer was upset until i told him i had insured them. somewhere, there's a little old lady with a bright purple indigo2 full of potting soil and philodendrons ...)

Re:stuff owns us (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688794)

11 computers weighed my personal space down, sparc servers and stations, sgi indigo2s and dumb terminals

Hey, that's some good stuff there! I'm far happier that it all found a better home than to hear that it was simply trashed. Serious Unix machines never die. They are simply less powerful than a newer model. Doesn't mean you should throw them away though. You never know who might need a cheap Unix workstation to get some work done, run background computations, or perform simple serving (e.g. sendmail).

You can keep the x86 cruft, however. They're older than the dinosaurs the day after they're released.

Re:stuff owns us (4, Interesting)

digitalsushi (137809) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688882)

4 years ago I ended up with a Sparc Server 20, I think it was called. Down in an Urban School System somewhere in Rhode Island, my first time on a field dispatch.

I was doing an IP renumbering, and I reset the default route on their web server. I was telnetted in at the time, from another room. "Oops, I just broke the default route and I saved it in the start up file. I need to reset this at the console." The head IT lady goes "What's a console?" I explained it to her. She walked me up to the console, all remaining 50 keys on the keyboard and shattered monitor and everything.

Walked out of there with IIS running her website, lugging the sparc server 20 to the trunk of my car. It was a horrible first experience. I learned that you never get free hardware twice!

Re:stuff owns us (3, Insightful)

vasqzr (619165) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688895)

Serious Unix machines never die. They are simply less powerful than a newer model. Doesn't mean you should throw them away though. You never know who might need a cheap Unix workstation to get some work done, run background computations, or perform simple serving (e.g. sendmail).

You can keep the x86 cruft, however. They're older than the dinosaurs the day after they're released.

Old SGI/Sun computers definately look cooler. They definately are cooler. But they require a lot more to get to work, and you have to have special keyboard/mice/monitor adapters in most cases.

If you just want a *nix box to run sendmail or just for the sake of it, it's usually more efficent to have an old Pentium II (which are almost always faster unless you're doing 3D stuff on the SGI) and run Linux/BSD on it.

Re:stuff owns us (1)

digitalsushi (137809) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688975)

the sexiest solution is to get one of those 1 bay sized computers that mount right inside another, regular sized machine, and let it be your firewall.

Re:stuff owns us (4, Insightful)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688989)

If you just want a *nix box to run sendmail or just for the sake of it, it's usually more efficent to have an old Pentium II (which are almost always faster unless you're doing 3D stuff on the SGI) and run Linux/BSD on it.

But they lack the flexibility of the Unix hardware. That stuff was designed to work no matter what, to be fixable no matter what, and to be remotely accessible no matter what. You just can't get that type of reliability out of an x86. It simply isn't built for the type of abuse that a Unix machine was engineered for.

Call me when PCs get OpenBoot, and I'll begin to consider them for serious work.

What's coming out of my basement? (-1, Redundant)

Neil Blender (555885) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688728)

About 1/100 of what could. I wish they'd take everything.

Re:What's coming out of my basement? (2, Informative)

Neil Blender (555885) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688750)

One a side note, if you have anything that works, it is possible to find charities that will accept old equipment (not too old, but not necessarily working.) You can write it off. I donated an old G3 last year and took a $200 write off.

Re:What's coming out of my basement? (-1, Offtopic)

sarah_kerrigan (764949) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688771)


I wish they'd take everything

Oh my, don't tell me such dirty things ;-) Be careful with what you wish!


Re:What's coming out of my basement? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688921)

Oh my, don't tell me such dirty things ;-) Be careful with what you wish!

Excuse me for asking, but I'm honestly curious. Are you really a woman (girl?) who likes to mess with men's heads, or are you actually some sicko freak who thinks it's funny to lead a bunch of guys into thinking you're female?

If you're in the later group, I really don't want to know why you do it. If you're in the former, however, it raises the question of "why?" Do you really enjoy the attention that much?

Re:What's coming out of my basement? (4, Funny)

baudilus (665036) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688808)

Stop filing Federal Taxes, then ignore their mail and phone calls. Oh, they'll take everything.

I thought thats what ebay was for. (4, Funny)

Evildave (21909) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688733)

thats where I get rid of all my computer junk.

Re:I thought thats what ebay was for. (4, Funny)

Darth_brooks (180756) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688790)

Funny, that's where i get all my computer junk.


Here we go! It's comin' right at ya! Watch out! (1)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688961)

You damn American geeks need to get some priorities!!!!

With you "Moore's law" and your Radeon 9800's. You consumeristic, built-in obsolence society is a scource on Mother Earth!

I suggest you all watch "Yank Tanks" [imdb.com][*] to see how people in the rest of the world make do with what they've got instead of squandering their lives in the pursuit of material things!

[*]Actually, I do reccommend this film. I could very well envision these people living in some sort of William Gibson futureworld underclass, carefully nursing along long-dead technology and using things for purposes other than their intended use.

Re:I thought thats what ebay was for. (1)

Jahf (21968) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688859)

No kidding ... my problem isn't junk that doesn't work ... it's things like Cobalt boxes or a Zaurus or an old multifunction laser printer with no Linux drivers. All perfectly good and working, but I never have gotten off my bum to inventory and put on Ebay (Ebay always seems a bit of a hassle, I swear I'd be willing to pay 10%-30% depending on value for someone to sell and ship my items for me :)

Re:I thought thats what ebay was for. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9689004)

If by Zaurus you mean an SL-5500, is there any chance you'd like to sell it to me?

Send an email to temp(at)stevensaysno(dot)com if you would.

broken laser Printers, be gone! (3, Interesting)

gevmage (213603) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688736)

All right! This is great! My wife will be thrilled.

I have two defunct laser printers, probably at least one dead monitor, and some other misc. stuff to come out of my basement. Stuff that frankly is too expensive to ship to sell on ebay.

Re:broken laser Printers, be gone! (5, Interesting)

digitalsushi (137809) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688941)

Want to get rid of something for free?

I kid you not this ALWAYS WORKS.

Put it outside on a table with a hefty pricetag overnight, like a yard sale you didn't clean up.

Every single thing I've put out on the front lawn like that, including a carrion mini-fridge, groaning for burial, has been stolen!

Nothing "can't" be sold on eBay. (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688951)

Ever tried? People will buy anything -- and if you make sure they know that the buyer pays S&H, you're in the clear.

Old Computers (1)

Bob McCown (8411) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688738)

Last fall, I sent over 2 dozen old 486 boxes (had grandiose plans for a renderfarm a few years ago) up to a recycling place in NH. They took them for free. The rest of my crap goes into the electronics bin at the dump.

Re:Old Computers (1)

awhelan (781773) | more than 9 years ago | (#9689013)

For us New Englanders, where is this place in New Hampshire? I checked the Office Depot store locator only to find the closest one is over 150 Miles away from my Eastern Massachusetts home in "POUGHKEEPSIE NY". That's a real hike for one electronic per day. I'd love to take a trip up to NH to regain my basement, closet and desk space.

A happy customer recommends (5, Interesting)

tekunokurato (531385) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688745)

Recycle your used tech with 5R Processors! They are the nation's largest computer recyclers and put a lot of the tech to work either through refurbished sales or donations.

i see (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688746)

And by "recycle" they mean "dump in another country or in the ocean."

Dirty dirty (5, Funny)

cloudkj (685320) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688751)

Well, I sure hope the the recycling plant workers don't mind the sour cat piss smell and the rat droppings when they open up the case of my old 386.

TVs 27" or smaller? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688756)

Can I cut my 36" TV in half?

Re:TVs 27" or smaller? (2, Funny)

jaraco (215575) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688813)

If you cut it in half diagonally, it'll still be a 36". I suggest cutting it vertically.

I have a truck load... !!! 1 per day.. ahhh (1)

jet70 (769034) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688765)

Cool. With my truck load of stuff. 1 item per day could take me past labor day. :)

Re:I have a truck load... !!! 1 per day.. ahhh (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688923)

Get a bunch of friends to help carry the stuff in.

1 per day per person...

Everything that takes up space but isnt used (1)

pklinken (773410) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688768)

1 Sun IPX with 19" monitor
1 Sharp 'luggable' XT
1 no... that would be EVERY modem i own.. just to show off my 10mbit line!

Everything else in my basement is also dead but not a computer. .

I hate stories like this... (3, Insightful)

Kid Zero (4866) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688770)

People throwing stuff out when I could use something besides the 1994 era Pentium I have right now.

Coming out of my basement? Heck... (5, Funny)

march (215947) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688772)

What's coming out of my basement? Heck, I'm going to go and stand in front of these stores and try to take the old stuff from people who are going to recycle it so I can add them to my collection!!

I'm still looking for that old atari and timex sinclair... :-)

Re:Coming out of my basement? Heck... (1)

ibmman85 (643041) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688851)

heck yes!!! we had a computer recycling day at school this year and I picked up a few systems, as much as they would let me take...

Re:Coming out of my basement? Heck... (1)

Creedo (548980) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688912)

Oh yeah? Well, make an offer on a TS1000 with the 16k ram upgrade then :)

My collection of dead monitors... (1)

phil reed (626) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688783)

Can't send 'em to the dump, due to all the lead in the CRT. A half-dozen monitors will be leaving my basement. Also a Compaq 386sx and 386 (upgraded to a 486DX2 via an Overdrive chip), and I'm sure I'll find some more stuff. Anybody want an original IBM PC async serial card?

This is great news.

other ways to recycle... (5, Insightful)

jmrobinson (660094) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688787)

While I think this is great of Office Depot, I think re-implementing some of the older technology to maybe some younger siblings, cousins, Boys and Girls club, etc. could also be good. There are still a lot of people that can afford these types of things. So, before you go recycling that 486 at office depot, thing about re-deployment!

Re:other ways to recycle... (1)

freeze128 (544774) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688878)

Excellent idea. I have a box full of old games that will only work on a 486 or thereabouts. We should get that stuff together.

I don't really have a use for a 250MB tape drive, but some older machine might.

Re:other ways to recycle... (5, Informative)

Snap E Tom (128447) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688992)

Please don't. Ask yourself whether you'd want to use this machine everyday.

I volunteer for a medium-sized nonprofit. We get a fair number of PIII's that we use and a lot of 486's and PI's that we can't. Sure, we get a lot fewer PIII's and even PIV's, but there's enough out there on the market that our staff of sixty all have PIII's and above. People think they can just dump off their toxic crap and get a tax write off. Instead, they just shift the burden of getting rid of this stuff on us.

I have two non-working 21" monitors (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688791)

...I need to get rid of. Right now they are in boxes in my living room floor taking up space, and I think the landfill charges to take them. I just might stop by a couple of times and get rid of them.

Monitors have lead - please recycle (4, Insightful)

lawpoop (604919) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688800)

Don't dispose of your old monitors. They have lead and other hazardous materials that we really don't want in our groundwater. Please take this opportunity to have them disposed of properly.

Re:Monitors have lead - please recycle (1)

Bob Cat - NYMPHS (313647) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688953)

That lead is in the glass. How is it going to get into the water supply?

Is my 24% lead crystal stemware poisoning me? No.

So the questions flow... (4, Interesting)

TastyWords (640141) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688809)

1) are they trying to get us into the store(s)? (hoping we'll do some business whilst we're there)
2) are they trying to do the public a service (by getting the possible toxic materials out of the dumps?
3) They're hoping (x)% of the materials turned in with have (y%) of redeeming worth, either directly, for sale on eBay, or as a donation to a local school as write-off donation?

Re:So the questions flow... (2, Interesting)

Ubergrendle (531719) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688971)

...#4) All of the above.

Even the most ethically run companies (i'm thinking of places like Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream, or Canada's Mountain Equipment Co-Operative) still have to run their companies without incurring a loss.

If you take this into consideration, you still realise its a good idea for the Office Depot. It shows that they're creative and listens to the needs of their customers.

Our dump here in Mississauga, Ontario, is free (to encourage recycling and proper disposal of hazardous materials) so i won't need this service. Unfortunately the 21' 200lb Radiation King(tm) went to the dust-bin in the sky a loooong time ago.

Re:So the questions flow... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688993)

4) They are doing (2), but because they get free publicity and tax credits.

Re:So the questions flow... (1)

Patrick (530) | more than 9 years ago | (#9689015)

All of the above. The one-per-customer-per-day limit suggests that the emphasis is on #1, drawing customers to the store.

I have a fair amount of stuff to recycle, so I'll probably end up making 5-10 trips to Office Depot to do it. Some of what I have is loose video and Ethernet cards. Loose ISA cards aren't in their list, so do I have to stuff them into a computer before I can recycle them?

Monitors! (4, Interesting)

steveha (103154) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688810)

It is impossible to get rid of monitors, at least here in Washington state. Even working monitors. Schools don't want them donated. Salvation Army and similar charities don't want them. You aren't allowed to throw them in the trash. All you can do is sell them, if you can find a buyer who actually wants one, or pay $10 for environmentally correct disposal. ($10 is for a 14" monitor; bigger ones cost more.)

So, this is a free service that is worth $10 or more if you need to get rid of a monitor. Cool.


Clever (3, Insightful)

maxchaote (796339) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688816)

The companies would not disclose how much their program will cost, or how they're splitting the bill.

There's no cost. There's a lot of money to be had in the recycling industry -- especially in recycling electronics. They sound like they're just in it for environmental and humanitarian reasons, but they're in it for their wallets first and foremost.

Re:Clever (4, Insightful)

gerardrj (207690) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688899)

While it is indeed true that there is a lot of money to be made in the recycling business, most all of that money to be made is in charging consumers to recycle instead of tossing things in the landfill.

With the exception of aluminum, most recycling programs would loose money if not for the fees charged to end users.

Re:Clever (2, Informative)

knitting fool (542573) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688907)

I personally don't care if they're in it for their wallets. If one person recycles a moniter (or whatever) that would have otherwise gone into a dump (and consequently into the groundwater) I say, "good for them". Assuming the customers have a little self control and don't go on a spending spree after droping off the electronics, it isn't hurting them a bit.

Re:Clever (1)

aelbric (145391) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688984)

Who cares as long as it's getting done. I know I have enough to guarantee a trip to OD every day from now until Labor Day.

God I hope they don't read /. They may change their minds.

give them to me instead! (1)

ibmman85 (643041) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688820)

I'm definitely a collector.. but I constantly feel this desire to have more and it just won't stop.. I have probably around 60 systems and alot of it is old but some of it is pretty neat like my TRS-80 model II (mmm 8" disks) and the PCjr and a Kaypro IIx and pretty much everything I have works also. Have 10 computers on in this room right now, 12 are plugged in... although my parents are starting to not like it very much and dust is unmanagable to clean off that much stuff I'll gladly take more.. except if anyone wants to buy a small stack of working dot matrix printers I have a bunch that I don't use.. maybe ill take advantage of the officemax thing for them..

Re:give them to me instead! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688913)

I bought an Apple Performa 6800/180mhz complete with monitor, printer and scanner two years ago. The seller only wanted $50.00 total and I thought it would be a neat toy. But I was mistaken. Now it just takes up space in a corner.

Lucrative alternative (1)

zaphodchak (644557) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688824)

Seems like enough people are looking for junk on eBay that one could very cheaply dispose of an item there, only need to worry about shipping. Apart from that, there is a chance for a porfit, however, in the event of actual junk, listing fees would quickly bog one down, especially in cases where they have a lot of junk to rid themselves of. Other than that, it's a great idea, but it seems like a bit of an irony that it's offered for free, instead of offering a rebate with a return or something, as with cars, and just about everything else. If it weren't free, we'd see a lot more CRT's in the dumps, poisoning the water, etc. It seems like the program shouldn't be a net cost for the companies involved, if they are actually recycling (as in reusing components) instead of disposing (as in, CRT's in the dump... or in a hazardous materials dump, which would cost more money).

"tossing out" PCs?! (1)

psyconaut (228947) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688831)

"Don't be so quick to toss out your old PCs, fax machines or digital cameras"

Where I live, Toronto, it's actually against a city bylaw to throw anything with a PCB in the garbage. Pretty sure lots of people do, however. But's its good to see Office Depot and HP offering consumers something better to do.


Parallel Computing Array (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688840)

If someone could find enough storage space then those old machines could probably be combined into a fairly powerful grid computing array or linux cluster. The main problem that I forsee is that at some point the really old x86 machines take up more physical space then they are worth in terms of additional computing power made available to the cluster. However, if someone had some wherehouse space that they were not using then it would be an interesting project and it just might convert machines that are now useless by themselves into a worthwhile computing resource.

Re:Parallel Computing Array (1)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 9 years ago | (#9689025)

So you mean, you could get a cluster as powerfull as... a PII 3GHz, but only for 20x the space, 2x the cost (of your time setting up the thing) and 30x the power consumption.

Sounds like a good deal...

Sigh...I should probably take advantage of it... (1)

jejones (115979) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688841)

The problem is that I can't help thinking that someone out there might like a Sony NEWS, or an old Sun SPARCstation with a HUGE (but small in capacity) SCSI hard drive! :)

Re:Sigh...I should probably take advantage of it.. (1)

WD_40 (156877) | more than 9 years ago | (#9689017)

I want the HUGE (but small in capacity) hard drive!

Putting the basement "farm" out to pasture (1)

Clinoti (696723) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688847)

I've got so much junk downstairs it's not even funny to the point where in my delusional state of "going to build it..." had me purchase a small bureau at a yard sale, just so I could sort all the equipment from their bins into drawers.

I want to keep some stuff, like kind of a small a museum for my kid later on, or just for the desperation midnight frontend server build, but with 8 sun lunchboxes, enough compaqs for a small business and more ISA/Tokens, and Ethernet cards than computers it's time to realize my dreams of folding/farming/rendering have only yeilded me the fruit of of a title: New-age-digital packrat.

What are they doing with them? (1)

loftwyr (36717) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688862)

It's nice of all of us to give our old computers and other electronics to them, but what, exactly, will be done with them?

Are they truly being recycled? Will they be melted down for reusable metals or just scavenged for useful parts and the rest sent to a landfill?

If they're just going to landfill, I can do that at the curb...

My basement? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688864)

Porn. Lots and lots of porn. Oh, and a few MP3s.

For those who lots of stuff to get rid of... (1)

Jane_Dozey (759010) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688866)

Get friends and family to take in an item aswell as yourself. That way you can get rid of much more stuff in a smaller amount of time.
It's always good to dispose of old equiptment properly (or even recycle it).

Consider ebay. (4, Insightful)

jafo (11982) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688867)

My wife pointed out that ebay is one of the most powerful resources in recycling that we have today. I'd have to agree. I don't know what Office Depot is doing with these machines, but wouldn't you rather have your old gear to go someone that can make use of it?

For example, I recently got a "new" used car. It came with tired I didn't particularly like. I replaced the tires in fairly short order, and sold the old ones on ebay. They were a mis-matched pair. One pair I sold and because of shipping difficulties I ended up losing about $5 on it. That's less than the $20 I would have paid to take them to the dump, which is probably what would have happened if not for ebay. And now someone has a pair of tires in good shape that they can make use of.

The other pair I sold for $90, because they were not an "off brand".

I've been putting a bunch of my junk up for sale. Things that aren't really useful to me, but are to other folks. Plus, once in a while you come across the rare things like the Dreamcast Ethernet adapter that I sold for twice what I paid for it, or my classic HP calculator which looks like it will sell for almost twice what I paid for it.

Usually, I first offer it to local folks in my Linux Users Group. Selling is much easier that way, and you don't tend to have to muck around with shipping. ebay makes shipping pretty easy though.

So, remember that recycling isn't just about giving things to the "recycling centers". If you can get it to someone who can use it, all the better. If you can recover a few bucks in the process, all the better.


Reuse before Recycle (4, Insightful)

nulltransfer (725809) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688868)

Instead of recycling electronics, it would be much better if they could send them to less-developed countries where high-tech is more or less non-existant.

Recycling is better than throwing out, but I recall it only usually saving 20% energy. Reusing, on the other hand, is much more efficient.

What I'm getting rid of... (2, Funny)

keybsnbits (711259) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688869)

Boy will my girlfriend be happy when I finally get rid of that old flux capacitor I have sitting around. I recently upgraded to a 2.42 gigawatts flux capacitor for my time travels. Thats twice as good as the original! The old one has been rendered useless.

bill? Ahahahaha. (2, Insightful)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688893)

Office Depot and Hewlett Packard will be splitting the bill.

Must be the same "bill" as the one they have for recycling(gee, what swell guys) those $20 inkjet cartridges.

Seriously, corporations don't do jack unless they think it'll help them sell their wares. If Office Depot and HP aren't making money by giving all the junk to a recycling company, they're expecting to steal away customers from Staples and IBM, with good will. They're probably doing both.

Sorry, but touchy-feely posts about corporations doing "good stuff", like sponsoring breast cancer research(a favorite for companies looking to increase female customer numbers, such as BMW), disgusts me. Yes, the byproduct is "good stuff gets done"- but don't go on about them doing it from the bottom of their hearts or because they -care-. Corporations don't have hearts, and neither do boards or executive officers. They do it because they want to sell more stuff and want the PR points- it's pure greed.

*Finally* (2, Interesting)

diagnosis (38691) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688898)

I live around Boston, MA, and my roommate has been trying to get rid of an aging VGA monitor he bought on eBay for like 12 cents. After he found out it wouldn't fit on the shelf he wanted to use, he dumped it on the curb, only to learn the city wouldn't take it; they told him to take it to the dump. So of course, a week or so later, he goes to the dump, expecting to have to pay them to take it. The dump people tell him, "no, the city will take it for free; just leave it on the curb. We *can't* take it here." So this Monday, he leaves it on the curb, a little bit frustrated but happy to see it go.

What do I see while walking to my car this morning? His monitor, lying alone on the sidewalk, the only item left behind after the garbagemen visited.

So, thanks, Office Depot!

P.S. Go Earth.

Garbage (1)

nuggz (69912) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688983)

Throw it in a garbage bag.
Throw it in a garbage can.
Smash it up and put it in a garbage can. If sharp encase in a yard waste bag (large paper bag) and put that in a plastic bag.

Evil plot by corporations... (2, Funny)

Lodragandraoidh (639696) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688900)

Okay - I've got my tinfoil hat squarely on - and tongue in cheek.

It occurs to me that this could be an evil plan to remove older technology from the potential hacking marketplace.

Think about it: everyone throws away their old computers (perfectly suitable as Linux workstations/servers) - forcing people who want to build low cost servers to buy new machines instead.

Taking this further into the realm of the strange, the move to force adoption of DRM technologies would get a boost in the arm from the acquisition of new computers due to the lack of used alternatives... :0

Okay...maybe not... (takes tinfoil hat off and slinks away)

Sorry, but ... (1)

bob670 (645306) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688911)

eBay beat 'em to it, thanks to eBay I rarley let a PC get so old I won't use it any longer, my upgrade cycle is a little more frequent but a whole lot cheaper.

140 miles away... (1)

domsol (17540) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688917)

Alas, the nearest Office Depot retail location to Boston is in Kingston NY.

Oh, well.

I hoarde this crap.. (5, Funny)

JRHelgeson (576325) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688918)

Twice a year up in Princeton, Minnesota they have a machine gun shoot (www.tankrides.com). Now, regardless of what your opinion of guns are - pulling off 100 rounds from an M-60, AK-47 or an M-16, I tell you, nothing compares.

I stockpile old computer equipment to take up to the shoot so I can put a few rounds of .50 cal through it.

There's nothing like pulling the trigger on a Barrett 50 cal sniper rifle and watching that old server that gave you years of grief explode.

It's beautiful.

I'll happily recycle your computer junk! (1)

NoMoreNicksLeft (516230) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688927)


Atari STs
HP PArisc systems
SGI Systems
Apple 2s
Apple Lisas
Any Xerox computers
IBM RS6000/AS400 (especially microchannel based)
Sun Ultrasparc
Any Alpha based systems
Any Cray systems
Any ATM622 nics
Any HIPPI equipment
(Any unusual nics for that matter)
Any Vaxen

Email me!

I smell something like apples around here... (1)

Bombcar (16057) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688935)

Interesting that this was announced the day that Office Depot [macrumors.com] begins selling Apple computers......

Computer Recyclers in Ottawa (1)

denis-The-menace (471988) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688942)

In Ottawa, we have this place known as
Computer Recyclers [computerre...ottawa.com].
They only take computer parts though. No fax or cell phones. They sell the stuff for scrap metal but you wouldn't know it from there site.

Old, huge TV (1)

kingLatency (624983) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688948)

I have an old TV in my basement. I estimate it's from the 50s, but I don't know when for sure. I'd estimate that the screen itself isn't larger than the 20", but the whole box is probably three feet wide by two feet tall by two feet deep. I'm bad at estimating weight, but it's probably weighs more than our semi-modern 27" CRT Sony.

Will Office Depot take this? It's only 20", after all. ;)

Available in Canada? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688957)

The article says only the continental U.S., but does anyone know if the same thing will be happening for us Canucks?

I'm starting to feel guilty using mine as a boat anchor.

Profit? (1)

iwhittle (794529) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688959)

Ever wonder how many people trade in their perfectly good machine because it is full of spyware and viruses due to an unpatched Windows installation and a direct DSL/Cable hookup? There are certainly people out there that think that a 2 year old machine is worthless even though all it needs is a fresh install.

On the inside of Tower Cases and TVs (1)

hadesan (664029) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688965)

Would they mind if I filled my tower computer cases and TV sets insides with other junk I want to get rid of (wood shavings, cat litter, etc...)

Interesting idea... where does it go? (1)

jcostantino (585892) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688974)

Wonder if the employees get to take their pick of stuff being brought in? The stuff *I* throw away is of no use to anyone, myself included. The stuff *other* people throw away who are far more affluent is potentially good.

I'm willing to bet that there will be decent (not amazing) stuff being given up. 2 megapixel cameras, older P4/Athlon systems, decent stuff of all types. They should maybe try to refurbish the better stuff and donate it to schools or low-income families. It sounds like it's just going to be sent to the recycler to be melted down.

And of course... cue the obligatory "In Soviet Russia, $subject $verbs you! :)

me == nerd + packrat (1)

weshootyourun (787233) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688976)

i'll be the one going to the manager of my local home depot asking if i can root through the things they've received in but not recycled yet, looking for treasures.

End up in a third world country (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688977)

After any resellable parts are removed the vast majority will be shipped to India, Pakistan, China, etc. Technology exists to reduce ewaste and any other waste to raw elements such as carbon, etc. however, it would be to easy and make too much sense. I have interested Indian investors but no U.S. investors. Looks like the Indians will be making money on our 'out sourced' ewaste as well.

The more old non DRM computers are out of the way. (1)

Yaa 101 (664725) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688979)

The better...

This seems the nnnth try to get old hardware platforms out of the way for new plans...

Every year I get more synical about companies trying to help consumers...
It is simply not true that they help us, period.

I refuse to believe it is in all our interests...

Finally I can get rid of those fish tanks (1)

skintigh2 (456496) | more than 9 years ago | (#9688986)

Good bye, spherical 15" and 17" monitors from the early/mid 1990s. Good bye P90 and P166. Good bye junk I've wanted to get rid of forever but didn't want to pollute the world with.

Quote from Michael Moore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9688997)

If you want a good argument for recycling please stare deeply into my manteats. You will be hypnotized and submissive to my liberal will...


spoonani (786547) | more than 9 years ago | (#9689002)

now i can finally get rid of that VoodooPC and my 20" lcd monitor i got in December...you know, 128MB of vRAM was SOOOO last year! In all seriousness, I will definitely take this offer up on my truly vintage crap.

sorry but.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9689027)

i usually use my electronics till the wheels fall off (till their beond repair), then they end up as hand-me-downs to other family members if they have enough function left to do anything with

I just returned from Goodwill (1)

rjamestaylor (117847) | more than 9 years ago | (#9689030)

We're moving halfway cross country and I decided to take the old laptops, 1/2 ton 17 inch monitor, extra cases, scads of DIMMs, SODIMMs and SIMMs, CPUs, fans, ISA/PCI/??? cards, cables (network, power, serial, parallel, and "huh?"), AB Switch boxes, KVMs, and other items in my "yesterday and someday" collection to Goodwill.

I'm too busy for eBaying it away. Office Depot taking "one" personal electronic device a day would be a huge waste of time for me, for the parent and for most Slashdotters, I'd imagine.

My wife said, "I told you so." And, she did. Your advice is sage.

If only there was one in MA (1)

haplo21112 (184264) | more than 9 years ago | (#9689032)

Cause I have a pile that I can't get rid of its all deemed HazMat my the local trash haulers and nobody wants it unless I pay them money to take it...NOT Gonna happen...I am beginning to understand why empty lots get covered with various stuff like this, not that I'd ever do such a thing, I care about this little rock we live on a bit more than that.

yuo 7ail it! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9689033)

has sign1ficantly
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