At a press event at Facebook’s headquarters today, the company announced what it calls the Open Compute Project, which is essentially an initiative to make computing more efficient.
CEO Mark Zuckerberg introduced the event, mentioning various products launched within the past year, such as the new messaging system, the new Groups, and Facebook Places.
“It’s easy to lose track of what powers all of that,” he said.
Jonathan Heiliger, Facebook’s VP of Technical Operations explained that what Facebook is doing is sharing specs and design documents that went into creating Facebook’s improved efficiency in data centers and servers.
Benefits Facebook has seen, he says, include a 38% increase in energy efficiency and 24% cost savings. Very impressive.
The project includes things like server motherboard socs, CAD files, server chassis, power suppply, etc. Sharing software has existed for years, but it hasn’t existed in hardware yet, Fcaebook says. They hope to change that.
“It’s time to stop treating data centers like Fight Club,” said Heiliger.
Side note: Zuckerberg said, “We still consider ourselves a startup…maybe a slightly bigger startup.”
It’s also worth noting that many industry analysts were expecting the event to be used to launch new Groupon-like features.
We’ll see what Facebook has planned for f8 this year. Last year it was the game-changer that is the Open Graph.