Thursday, May 11, 2017

Data Center Links: May 11, 2017

Between company conference season and a lot of M&A activity recently, it is hard to keep up with the news.  Here are a few things I found interesting:

  • Facebook breaks ground on 1M sq ft Altoona data center.  Because Iowa is the best place for data centers.... Facebook broke ground on its fourth building in Altoona - a 1 million square foot data center. With this building the Facebook data center campus will total 2.5 million square feet.
  • Cisco acquires AI company MindMeld.  Just like many years ago when you had to keep a running list of who Cisco was buying, they are keeping a fast pace in 2017. Making it their third acquisition in two weeks Cisco dives deeper into AI by buying MindMeld, a San Francisco company that has developed a conversational platform based on natural language understanding (NLU). The NLU functionality will be integrated with Cisco's Spark platform. MindMeld, besides being on my own 'cool tech' list, has been recognized as one of the top companies leading the AI revolution.
  • Cray launches Supercomputers built for AI.  Cray has launched new CS-Storm supercomputers that are purpose-built for the most demanding AI workloads.  New CS-Storm 500GT and CS-Storm 500NX systems leverage NVIDIA Tesla GPU accelerators, which foster "up to 187 TOPS (tera operations per second) per node, 2,618 TOPS per rack for machine learning application performance."   I'll take two.  :)
  • NVIDIA GPU conference.  AI, self-driving cars, healthcare, Volta GPU platform, deep learning software tools.....   Too many to mention; check it out here.
  • Microsoft debuts Cosmos DB. At the Microsoft Build 2017 developer conference Microsoft introduced Azure Cosmos DB, a globally distributed database with five consistency choices. As a superset of DocumentDB Cosmos models include Strong, Bounded Staleness, Session, Consistent Prefix, and Eventual. 

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Data Center Links: May 3, 2017

Here are some (mostly) recent things I found interesting:

  • Shaw explores selling ViaWest: Sources 'familiar with the matter' say that Canadian cable company Shaw Communications is exploring options for selling ViaWest. Shaw bought ViaWest three years ago for $1.2 billion.
  • Amazon Strategy Teardown.  CB Insights has an amazing, detailed analysis of strategy at Amazon.  Company history, AI-as-a-Service, acquisition highlights, 'aggressive' growth plans, and initiatives by sector.  Wow.
  • iRobot: Vacuuming up Microservices on AWS.  I like cloud architecture stories. This one just spoke to me -- about microservices and modern applications and services.  "Ben Kehoe, Cloud Robotics Research Scientist at iRobot, explains how they built a serverless solution to power microservices that scale to control millions of robots. You’ll learn how they automate and optimize AWS Lambda function and Amazon API Gateway deployments with AWS CloudFormation and Swagger, plus how they inject information during the deployment process to decouple architecture details from the code."
  • Will Molten Silicon make Lithium-Ion 'Uneconomic'?  Australian company 1414 says it has  developed a molten silicon thermal energy storage system (TESS) that can store 500 kilowatt-hours of energy within a 70-centimeter cube. At 36x the capacity of a 14 kilowatt hour Tesla Powerwall 2 the company says it could build a 10 megawatt-hour plant for around AUD $700,000 (USD $528,000), or a tenth of the price of a Tesla battery-based project.
  • MIT Mathemetician spins up 220,000 core Google Compute Cluster.  Google announced that MIT math professor and computational number theorist Andrew V. Sutherland crafted a 220,000-core workload on Google Compute Engine using preemptable virtual machine instances. Sutherland is already planning an even larger run of 400,000 cores.
  • Path to Exascale. At a user forum U.S. Exascale Computing Project (ECP) director Paul Messina outlined the accelerated timetable with delivery of the first exascale machine now scheduled for 2021. The ECP is a collaborative effort of two U.S. Department of Energy organizations, the Office of Science (DOE-SC) and the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA).