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June 30, 2006

Project 02: Google's Secret Data Center


Google builds a big data center 130 miles north of Columbia River and The Dalles in Oregon. "The barren desert land surrounding the Columbia along the Oregon-Washington border — at the intersection of cheap electricity and readily accessible data networking — is the backdrop for a multibillion-dollar face-off among Google, Microsoft and Yahoo that will determine dominance in the online world in the years ahead" reported New York Times earlier this month.

Danny Hillis, a supercomputing pioneer thinks that "Google has constructed the biggest computer in the world, and it's a hidden asset". Google already has 450,000 servers all around the world, and that more than any other company.

"Google is like the Borg," said Milo Medin, a computer networking expert. "I know of no other carrier or enterprise that distributes applications on top of their computing resource as effectively as Google."

The Oregon data center, code-named Project 02, is kept under a veil of secrecy, although a computing center as big as two football fields is hard to hide. The location supplies cheap fiber and that's essential for Google's plans.

{ Photo by Daniel Terdiman / CNET News.com, where you can find other pictures }

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