– Steven Carlini, Sr Director, Data Center Global Solutions for Schneider Electric, says:
It has not been easy explaining to the average person what it is I do for a living. “We make the physical infrastructure solutions and offer services to help companies build data centers”. Most people kind of look at you funny and walk away – unless they are from the IT industry and still most of them get that funny look.
Until recently, my most successful attempt at articulating what data centers are, would be to reference movies like War Games, The Matrix, or The Terminator. “Oh, so you build the technology to enable machines to take control of the world!” Maybe, let’s hope not anytime soon…..
Thankfully today there appears to be an unintentional geekification of the world going on. This in turn makes the explanation of what I do somewhat plausible. It seems everyone (even non tech savvy senior citizens) have a smart phone with a data plan – this introduces data as a term people use everyday. Data plans will get them thinking about data and intuitively they know it has to be stored somewhere. With these smart phones they usually know how to take a picture. Many times when their phone fills up, they are prompted to save photos to “the cloud”.
Now everyone is being introduced to the term “cloud” as well. Lately there has been an influx of TV ads featuring clouds with images of their data center as the backbone of these clouds. Every day there is a new company touting competitive advantages like the fastest access to photos, largest library of on-demand movies, fast and easy on-line food ordering, and travel sites that highlight their data centers and reference them as “the cloud”. Then you have the infamous GAMFY (Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook and Yahoo). These giants routinely tout why their cloud data center technologies are the biggest and the baddest. This has forced the everyday person to transform from an analog existence to the high tech world of the geeks with cloud data centers helping us in our everyday lives.