The Medieval Data Center

The Medieval Data CenterJust saw that Google has an alligator “guarding” its South Carolina facility. Now folks, that’s some change that we can believe in. Sure its just one lonely gator for now, but I think these guys are on to something. Google, of course, is denying that this is a purposeful move. They’re saying the alligator just moved into one of its rainwater collection ponds—talk about your green initiatives—and this has nothing to do with data center security. I say, boys don’t hide your light under a bushel. This is the kind of innovative thinking that this industry has been dying for. If you’re like me, and I know many of you are, you have become a little jaded regarding what passes for big new ideas in our industry—Cloud! Big Data! Green! Modular! blah, blah, blah. But going back to the time of knights and castles for new security solutions, that’s some out of the box thinking.

Let’s take just a moment to think about the ramifications of what this can mean for data centers. I think whole new vistas just opened up to us. Using carnivorous creatures to safeguard facilities is the perfect way to provide eco-friendly solutions while deterring unauthorized access. If I’m trying to gain entry to someone’s data center am I more worried about some silly thumb scanner or a twelve-foot reptile that could chew my face off? Is there really even a choice? And doesn’t everyone love water front property? Of course they do, and nothing says waterfront like your very own moat. This also presents us with the ability to bring back the old drawbridge, an architectural feature I believe, whose return has been long overdue. This would give new meaning to the phrase “gated access”.

This whole new medieval security trend also offers data center designers a wealth of new design options. Don’t want a moat? Try a den of ferocious animals instead. I’ve always been a tigers and pit man myself. The possibilities are endless. And animals work cheap. No more paying for that security guard dozing off by the loading dock. Just toss Simba some raw meat and you’re good to go. And if that wasn’t enough, we can’t overlook the aesthetic alternatives that this new security paradigm offers us.

Let’s admit it, most data centers look pretty much the same. But can you imagine a data center with those turret towers on each corner—maybe even with archers perched on each one? The prospect of getting thumped in the chest by an arrow is certainly going to deter even the most determined curiosity seeker. And what about catapults? Those things are just plain cool. History is funny sometimes. You think firing flaming balls of hay or giant rocks at potential intruders is just the fond reminiscence of some bygone era, and, suddenly, everywhere you look it’s catapulting, catapulting, catapulting.

I’m sure by now you’re all as thrilled by this data center breakthrough as I am. Let’s embrace this innovation for the creative opportunity that it is. Dare to dream because I don’t think we’re at the stage that we can say any idea is a bad one. Even from a news perspective, the prospects are exciting. Instead of having to read drivel like the “Five Fundamental Rules for a Greener Data Center”, we can look forward to fascinating fare like “How Frank Zappa Inspired Me to Use Flesh Ripping Weasels to Guard My New Data Center”. Boy, I can’t wait, and I bet you can’t either. So now if you’ll excuse me, I have a vat of oil to start boiling.