Last Friday's 4th SVLG summit on data center energy efficiency was decidedly quieter than in previous years. Anne Smart did a fine job with what resources she had at hand, but some industry innovators were missing from the line-up.
Fewer participants - possibly because of conflicts with other industry events might have contributed to this. Also the location was 30 minutes south of Santa Clara - definitely longer travel times to get to the event.
Smaller sponsorships - two utilities and a few service providers, but less than the last two years.
It was a different mix of users, vendors, and sponsors. From my perspective it was tame compared with earlier years where there was an edge to most of the presentations, showing something radically different and innovative. I missed the presence and participation of the Data Center Pulse founders, that in previous years added excitement to the audience when hearing how their Chill-Off case studies turned out.
The boldest idea came in the guise of a question from Mukesh Khattar at Oracle. After presenting some analysis, he concluded something like , "I am not convinced that aisle containment is a universal solution". Sorry if the quote isn't exactly accurate - I wasn't taking notes. Heresy! I hope this spawns more discussion because Mukesh quietly and politely questions a lot of assumptions in the industry, and always looks for a low cost no frills solution in his best practices recommendations.
I also liked the update presentation from OpenCompute.org. Four years ago I made a video about the attitudes surrounding the Summit, that innovative collaboration styles were taking place. I see now that the video is twice the length it should be. But even today, it has some very valuable content that is worth hearing again. Try to ignore the background music used to hide background noise, and remember that The Uptime Institute, not SVLG, underwrote the video production.
Rich Miller from Data Center Knowledge was there and covered the event. Look for photos and commentary on his site later this week.
Change is inevitable, and I know it won't always be the same people doing the same things. Ray Pfeiffer, KC Mares, Bill Tschudi, Dale Sartor, Zen Kishimoto, and Mark Bramfitt provided needed continuity this year. I hope that next year the Chill Off energy will return with a flourish and Dean's customary challenge!
Have a GREEN DAY!