What? Battelle writing about the enterprise? Well, don’t get used to it. But I do have to say, this example from Jonathan Schwartz, CEO of Sun, is really, really instructive about how Big Business can learn from Web 2.0. He started with a question in an earlier post – whither the datacenter?, in short. Big companies and the entrenched CXOs within them change slowly, and only when pushed, shoved, and forced by trends too big to ignore. I think Jonathan has found an example of such a trend in this anecdote from his latest entry:
I was talking to the CIO of a large financial institution last week. He told me he was in the midst of building out two new datacenters, spending $250,000,000 (yes, a quarter of a billon) on one, more than that on the other. He was beyond frustrated (as I’m sure was his CFO).
I asked him how long it was going to take, he said nearly three years. Years.
And then Dave Douglas reminded me that two to three years is longer than it took for YouTube to incorporate, build out their infrastructure, scale their business to serve the entire planet – and get sold.
Companies are really spending a quarter BILLION dollars on datacenter implementations that take three YEARS to execute? My God. On what planet?
I know, I know, sometimes YouTube goes down, and if you are running the NYSE, that ain’t an option. But man, one might hope you could figure out a way to failsafe with less than $250,000,000…..