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GCSE CS: Where do computer components come from?

1.8 Environmental Effects of Computing

Select two components from inside a computer. Break it down into the elements and minerals that are used to create it. How are they created? Where do the elements and minerals come from? What are the conditions like in the places where they are extracted/obtained? Are there efforts to make conditions better? How easy is the component to recycle? Does it create pollution, if so what kind?

Ideas for components:

  • Memory
  • CPU
  • Motherboard
  • HDD
  • SSD
  • Video card

Columbite Tantalite: a short film by Chiwetel Ejiofor Subscribe to the Guardian HERE: http://bitly.com/UvkFpD The latest in a series of short feature collaborations between the Young Vic and the Guardian, this short film is written and directed by Chiwetel Ejiofor. It's a postcolonial parable about the west's hunger for African mineral wealth, and about Congo's struggle to come to terms with its past - a contemporary response to Aimé Césaire's A Season in the Congo, which played at the Young Vic theatre earlier in 2013. Click for more Guardian short films like Columbite Tantalite: http://www.theguardian.com/stage/video/2013/dec/11/columbite-tantalite-short-film-chiwetel-ejiofor-video

It is an essential part of most mobile gadgets sold around the world and demand for cobalt is soaring. But the process of extracting the mineral from the earth comes at a huge human cost. A Sky News investigation has found children as young as four working in dangerous and squalid conditions in Cobalt mines in the Democratic Republic of the Congo for as little as 8p a day. Sky's special correspondent Alex Crawford reports.