A recent story on Sun's website (http://www.sun.com/emrkt/blackbox/story.jsp) details Project BlackBox, "an extraordinarily simple idea that will change the way you think about datacenters."
From the story:
After today, you'll never look at an ordinary shipping container quite the same way again. Project Blackbox is a prototype of the world's first virtualized datacenter — built into a shipping container and optimized to deliver extreme energy, space, and performance efficiencies.
Designed to address the needs of customers who are running out of space, power and cooling, Project Blackbox gives customers a glimpse into the fast, cost-effective datacenter deployments coming in the near future — where thinking out of the box means putting an IT infrastructure in a box.
"Just about every CIO and startup I meet says they're crippled by datacenter energy and space constraints — today's solutions are clearly failing to meet the needs of Web 2.0," said Jonathan Schwartz,CEO and president, Sun Microsystems. "Rather than trying to improve upon today's datacenter, designed for people babysitting computers, Project Blackbox starts from the world's most broadly adopted industry standard, the shipping container, and asks — how can we most efficiently create modular, lights-out datacenters from this base? The answer...with one-hundredth of the initial cost, one-fifth the cost per square foot and with 20 percent more power efficiency, we can deliver an immense multiple of capacity and capability — anywhere on earth."
This has far-ranging implications around new designs for data security (just *try* to find our data center) to business continuity (hurricane aimed at our Florida datacenter? Let's move it to Georgia!) to software piracy / RIAA / bit-Torrent (just *try* to find our data center, again!) to overall capacity planning (just imagine a cluster / parking lot of these!)"