Google Engineer Talks Power Efficiency

Google Distinguished Engineer Luiz Barroso's talk on data center power efficiency is being discussed in many places.

Google Distinguished Engineer Luiz Barroso gave a talk at their New York complex last week (titled "Watts, Faults, and Other Fascinating Dirty Words Computer Architects Can No Longer Afford to Ignore") in which he spoke at length about Google's focus on energy efficiency in its data center operations. A number of NYC-based bloggers were in attendance, and summaries are pvoided by eWeek, Donna Bogatin at ZDNet and Bill Koslosky at Wireless Doc, who also has posted photos from the event. A brief excerpt from eWeek:

"Power/energy efficiency and fault-tolerance are central to the design of large-scale computing systems today. And technology trends are likely to make them even more relevant in the future, increasingly affecting smaller-scale systems." Barroso acknowledged that Google is building data centers where there is hydroelectric power and "engineers are squeezing every little watt out of every card."

Barroso also spoke about Google's findings on disk failures when using SMART (Self Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology), noting that Google's findings didn't align with some prevailing assumptions about disk failures and heat. Barroso and two colleagues have published a paper on their findings ("Failure Trends in a Large Disk Drive Population") which is available online.