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Facebook was rapidly outgrowing its infrastructure in 2009. Classic data center design was not up to the task of the rapid influx of new users and data, photos and streaming video hitting Facebook’s servers. A small team of engineers spent the next two years designing a data center from the ground up to be cheaper, more energy efficient, and more ergonomic for the engineers who worked within.
That data center design was open sourced in 2011. Intel, Rackspace, and Goldman Sachs were the first three large organizations to join Facebook in the Open Compute Project, an effort to bring the benefits of open source collaboration to data centers.
Steve Helvie works on the Open Compute Project and he joins the show to describe how the project has evolved in the last six years–how it has affected data center design and the implications for the future.