Thursday Feb 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day Austin, TX

We're at the University of Texas today in Austin, TX, home of that great Austin City Limits on PBS and a wonderful music scene from which Shawn Colvin, Charlie Sexton, and many, many other groups have come from.

I need to catch you up on tour dates coming up. Recall we are multi-national at this point. The oversea's tour moves much slower because of all of the borders and water that we have to cross ;-)

Febuary 20-21st we are in Sao Paulo, Brazil and we are in Rio de Janeiro on February 26th. It is "Carnaval" in Brazil so everyone is partying away (from what I hear ;-). Sao Paulo itself is the largest city in South America, the fourth largest by population on our tiny globe, and the center of commerce for Brazil. Surely a place that could use some densely packed CPU and Storage.

March 4-9th we are at CeBIT in Hanover, Germany. CeBIT is a HUGE show. You want to know how huge? In 2007, there were 480,000 attendees (you saw that right).

Here in the U.S., we just came from San Antonio, where Dan the driver is feeding me with a liberal amount of pictures that I faithfully keep in the gallery at SmugMug, you can subscribe to the RSS Feed if you want.

From San Antonio, we moved onto Austin today and Dallas, TX is coming on February 20th.

Tuesday Feb 05, 2008

Sun MD Tour Truck vs. Sun Sponsored Race Car

Irvine, CA and San Diego, CA hosted the Sun MD Tour on 1/22 and 1/23 along with its Smokey and the Bandit side-kick, a Sun-sponsored Ford Mustang race car. You'll remember that Smokey and the Bandit had a '77 Pontiac Trans Am...did I ever want that car back in the day. It turns out 7 of them were used during filming and destroyed.

Well, the Sun MD tour is not carrying an illegal shipment of Coors across state lines and, hopefully, Sheriff Buford T. Justice (respects to Jackie Gleason) is not chasing down the driver.

In terms of raw speed, obviously I'd take the race car. In terms of bandwidth, I'm going with the Sun MD S20 on the truck. Using the Sun MD Data Warehouse Solution (containing 63 Sun Fire X4500s), you can house around 3 Petabytes of storage (click through to find other interesting configs):

Driving with my trusty side-kick (the Sun-sponsored Race Car shown above), I can transfer those 3 Petabytes of storage from San Francisco to Boston in about 48 hours. Now, this may take a few corrections from the "community" ;-) But, I believe that gives me 1 3,000,000,000,000,000 bytes / (48 hours \* 60 mins / hour \* 60 secs / min) = 5,787,037,037 17,361,111,111 bytes per second which is about 5.8 17 gigabytes per second. As far as bandwidth goes, not too shabby. You may even be able to squeeze that above 620 gigabytes per second if you throw a couple more Sun Fire x4500s in the back seat of the race car.

You know where to find me if my math is wrong ;-)

NOTE: Yes, I caught the FIRST mistake...I went with 1 petabyte instead of 3, what the Sun MD can hold in terms of Sun Fire X4500 storage.

Thursday Nov 01, 2007

Driving Project Blackbox

Have you ever wondered how you get a semi carrying a modular data center into a lunch room for a group of tour attendees? Denise Dipaola edited this video of our tour truck entering CEC a couple of weeks ago. It is a classic, up there with the video of the shake test.

Note: Moved to a pop-up window to avoid long load times.
Driving Project Blackbox

I have to ask after watching the video though, how do they keep that rig so shiny? Seriously, don't they ever hit a puddle or something? If I drove the thing around it would be covered in mud and have all sorts of water bottles and Halloween candy all over it.

Thanks for the video Denise and thanks for posting Laurent!

Speaking of "driving in", I have pictures of our Calgary stop that should be wrapping up real soon now. Once its closed up, the truck will be shipping out to Reno, a whopping 1,300 miles away...a 30 hour drive.

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Thursday Oct 04, 2007

Registration Information in Asia-Pacific Tour Leg

I was doing some legwork to get some information on registration for the Asia-Pacific region. We are currently in Singapore with the tour. There is no online registration location for the Beijing tour least not yet. The Beijing stop is 10/22 to 10/24. Perhaps there is a way to get the Project Blackbox Tour a cameo on Survivor China...the contestants could race to deploy a data center capable of doing rapid calculations of seismic activity (just an idea...).

At any rate, here are the registration locations I have for
\* 11/12-11/4 - Tokyo
\* 11/21-11/23 - Seoul
\* 12/18-12/20 - Sydney & Canberra - No online registration yet

While you are waiting for the tour to come to your city, read the Here Comes the Sun article at xchange magazine. There is some great information on Project Blackbox and some time with our own Darlene Yaplee (VP of Marketing for Project Blackbox) in the article. The article even has some information on this unit (our A9) that I can't talk about!

Have a great evening and GO ROCKIES!

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Friday Sep 28, 2007

Singapore - October 1st

The Project Blackbox Tour landed in the Asia-Pacific region and will be ready for business on October 1st in Singapore. Yes, are saying...but you've been quiet for over a month, why should we listen to you Mr. Monday? Well, I will offer up a few details for you:

  • Monday, October 1st: Singapore at the International Convention and Exhibition Centre
  • Tuesday...same location
  • ...well, same location all the way to Friday to be honest

This is the same unit that was on display throughout Europe, Russia, etc...

The complete Asia-Pacific tour schedule looks like:

  • Oct 2-4: Singapore
  • Oct 22-24: Beijing
  • Nov 12-14: Tokyo
  • Nov 21-23: Seoul
  • Dec 18-20: Sydney

Our customers in the region should have schedules and invitations. I did notice that the schedule is not up on our site, so let me know if you are missing your invite and I'll forward your information on to the "folks in the know".

I'm sending out some notes now to gather pictures from the region. If you attend one of the events, let me know or send pictures my way and I will get them posted! My email is paul dot monday at sun dot com!

Wednesday Aug 08, 2007

Wrap-up from Germany

This is, perhaps, one of my favorite pictures from the entire trip (and there are hundreds of very, very good pictures if you go through the various galleries). I think this picture pretty much sums it up:

Now, you can choose from one of the following two of what this actually "sums up":

  • Sun's commitment to lowering costs (which we have been obviously very successful at) by having employees rent the super-economy rentals at Avis
  • Sun's commitment to helping improve the world with eco-opportunities like Project Blackbox which represents a substantial opportunity for power and cost savings, both at the same time.

The picture itself is from Munich, Germany. The car is known as the "Eco Rider", here is a Blog link, and another, and a sales site. The Project Blackbox Tour had a very successful pass through Germany between June 20th and June 28th with stops in Dresden, Berlin, Munich, Heimstetten and Stuttgart. I've been to Stuttgart and in Germany a few times and I have to say it is one of the most beautiful and interesting places, so much history.

I went through the reports from Germany (from Robert, Alex and Gabrielle) and the events went exceptionally well. The truck arrived early from Austria (perhaps due to the Autobahn?), so the team was able to squeeze in tours for Sun employees in Munich. The next day, the truck was positioned in front of the IT and Mathematics Department of the University of Technology in Munich. The tour proceeded to the HPC Consortium Meeting in Dresden where Bob Schilmoeller presented Project Blackbox followed by our own Andy B, luminary extraordinairre. For those interested in some Sun trivia, Andy Bechtolsheim holds SunID #1 (numero uno, Mr. 1, the lead off man, oh...sorry). Who owns SunID #3?

The team didn't keep track of the number of students that visited the Project Blackbox, but the estimates for Dresden are around 300! There is something unique and innovative about touring Project Blackbox that makes it a great draw for the student and intellectual crowd.

In Berlin, the Project Blackbox Tour stopped outside the Sony Center at Potsdamer Platz, in the middle of Berlin (if you have to know, I own a Nintendo Wii...but would buy a Sony Playstation 3 if it were ... oh ... about $300 less and I could bowl from my living room).

In addition to many of the details covered above, the Germany team sent this fine quote in to cover the stay in Germany:

"Im Rahmen der weltweiten Tour hat die Blackbox auch die Deutschland
Station gemacht. Vom 20. bis zum 28. Juni 2007 konnte das erste
Rechenzentrum im Container in München, Dresden und Berlin besucht
werden. Mehr als 500 Kunden, Interessenten und Neugierige haben die
Blackbox besichtigt und waren beeindruckt, wie viel Leistung auf
kleinstem Raum energiesparend zur Verfügung steht!"

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Tuesday Feb 06, 2007

Tour Schedule and Official Web Site is Available

Just got word that the "official" Project Blackbox tour web site ( is now available. The tour schedule (dates and locations) is available from the page along with instructions on how to register for the tour. There will be photos posted on the official web site as well. Enjoy!

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Monday Feb 05, 2007

On tour with Project Blackbox

Other than pure coolness, you had to wonder why there is a Google Map above that is tracking one of our boxes from Project Blackbox. Simply put, the container tracked above is going on tour. There will be some 30 cities represented on the tour, not including all of those Flying J's along the way to gas up and get a hot dog. Even Rochester, MN is represented on the tour. My son was born there at the Mayo Clinic. I can honestly say, there is no better town than Rochester, MN to be sick in.

There will be a live, "official" web site with tour information coming soon. This will be an "unofficial" blog site for the tour where we post bits and baubles from the tour, including this picture of a guy violating union rules and trying to push the box just a little further (its a joke, really...):

The Project Blackbox tour is pretty full, but who are we to turn down a potential customer? You can contact us at if you would like an opportunity to visit the BlackBox enroute.

With Project Blackbox, we get to bring you the data center.

And, finally, an open invitation to all of you Sun Bloggers and potential customers that are planning on seeing the tour. Feel free to send me a link to your post and I'll link out to you. Or, if you don't have your own blog, send me your thoughts and pictures and I will do what I can to get them posted!

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