The AdBlock guys did some interesting analysis on exactly how much bandwidth, space, and recourses web advertisement are taking up and wrote about it in this blog post [adblockplus.org]. They develop an ad-blocking plug-in for Firefox, so they definitely have a one-sided opinion on the issue. It’s interesting either way to see just how much these ads “cost” you. Add this post together with the one from here a while back about malware coming in though advertisements, and it makes you want to block them all the more.
On top of plug-ins for your browser there is another (arguably better) way to block ads, and that is a web filtering proxy. A proxy is simply a filter that sits in between your internet browser and the web and can help you control what you receive or send out. I’m current running Privoxy, an open source local proxy and absolutely love it. It is really simply to use – just install it, and set your browsers connection to use a proxy at 127.0.0.1 port 8118. Its a quick and dirty way to block advertisements for any browser on your system with use browser plug-ins.