Looking back about Data Centre location

Looking back about Data Centre location

I just came across some writing I did while working at Sun Microsystems; they/we were considering building a cloud platform in Europe and I was part of the team evaluating the potential location. (This would have been 2008/2009.

The key driver for locations was thought to be firstly the IT infrastructure i.e. networks and power, an EU compliant data protection regime, and political stability, with skills supply coming a 4th.

We argued for London or Amsterdam, which is quite funny 10 years later as London looks to leave the EU and there are growing doubts about its GDPR compliance.

I argued that Sun needed to avoid dis-intermediation and retain brand loyalty; this may have been impossible as part of a Cloud offering but it had the world’s leading software superstructure products at the time. I argued that IaaS was not enough to make it work for Sun and thus initiatives like Project Kenai (a predecessor to GitHub) were important indicators of what we should do, although the font in which I did it was quite small. I didn’t see that this was crucial, but when Sun announced its cancellation, I knew that this was part of the end and a decision taken by those that fetishised hardware. Interestingly Oracle reversed this decsion, and it staggered on for another eight years. It was one of a huge number of destructive decisions taken by a management who won by luck until it ran out.

Interesting to see where I was right and where I was wrong and just how much has changed in 10 years. …