«American household appliances are sucking up energy even when they are switched off, according to researchers in Ithaca, New York. "Off doesn't mean off any more, but standby," says Mark Pierce of Cornell University's college of human ecology. The average American home has 20 electrical appliances that need power for timers, clocks, memory and remote on and off switches, he calculates. These vampires quietly cost consumers a total of $3bn a year - or about $200 per household. "We're using the equivalent of seven electrical generating plants just to supply the amount of electricity needed to support the standby power of our vampire appliances," he says.»
TWENTY never-really-off appliances, on average? Is this just some crazy Ithaca thing? For never-really-off appliances in my house, I have one digital clock, one microwave, a Tivo, a printer, and a TV. And I somehow doubt that they're pulling 200$/year worth of power.
Maybe part of living in Ithaca means having to have FIFTY digital clocks going on every surface, so you can watch your life drain away one minute at a time. At least that was my impression of the place, when I was there.