In a slick marketing move (and I mean that in the best sense of ‘slick’) to demonstrate the raw computing power of its Web MD product, Sun Microsystems has moved the Internet Archive into one of its modular data centers – or as they aptly describe – the Internet in a box.
They’ve also produced an interactive tour of the product, complete with IA founder Brewster Kahle describing the bi-monthly copying of more than “three petabtyes of information”. The press release kindly explains those three petabytes as “roughly equivalent to about 150 times the information contained in the Library of Congress” – giving us a great quantity-to-quality ratio for future use… but I digress. :)
I like this kind of project sponsorship, and for a number of reasons. First, it’s an altruistic, model citizen type of project for Sun to support – which has always been a genuine & admirable form of marketing, IMO. But the reason I described it as slick is the alignment of project to product. Is there really a more demonstrative act of raw computing power in today’s society? Not necessarily on a volume basis (which I have no idea what the bigger alternative would be), but purely on a symbolic level? Everything about it just leaves me muttering smart and shaking my head in amazement.
I’ll bet the boys at IBM wouldn’t mind stepping in, should Sun’s interest ever waver.