Dave Carlson runs North America's largest (known) Bitcoin mining operation, taking 10% to 20% all bitcoins made. It was reputed to be mining $8 million dollars a month during the peak prices a few months ago. The operation takes up two warehouses (video) and apparently Carlson has special deals on bulk electricity, near Columbia River hydro-power in Eastern Washington. Carlson partnered with a shadowy Ukrainian known only by his handle "Bitfury" who designed a custom ASIC chip controlled by a Raspberry Pi, "he taught himself microprocessor engineering and designed his chip by hand at his kitchen table".
San Francisco's Bay Barge Mystery "Something big and mysterious is rising from a floating barge at the end of Treasure Island, a former Navy base in the middle of San Francisco Bay." And now one has showed up in a Maine harbor. Update from C|Net News.
Home Truths: Domestic Workers in California (PDF). 2012's groundbreaking National Domestic Worker Survey was conducted in 14 cities; the sample analyzed in this report includes 631 domestic workers (nannies, caregivers, housecleaners) in four metropolitan areas in California: Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, and San Jose. [more inside]
Facebook versus The Cloud "I got a call, 'Jay, there's a cloud in the data center'," Parikh says. "'What do you mean, outside?'. 'No, inside'." The data centre in question.
Bundled, Buried & Behind Closed Doors. "Lower Manhattan’s 60 Hudson Street is one of the world’s most concentrated hubs of Internet connectivity. This short documentary peeks inside, offering a glimpse of the massive material infrastructure that makes the Internet possible."
After a disastrous experience with international banking, Iceland has a new angle to attract investment. BBC News reports that a company called Verne Global is currently converting an unused warehouse at the former US Navy airbase (Keflavik) near Reykjavik into a carrier neutral datacenter / colocation facility. The promise is abundant carbon-neutral low cost electricity and the lack of need for any air conditioner system. With a mean June/July temperature of only 13C, Iceland can use air side cooling to dissipate the heat generated by densely packed servers. Iceland is not exactly the best place in the world telecom-wise, but it is linked to Europe and North America by the FARICE , DANICE and CANTAT-3 cables.
Today's entry on the Google blog was altered in a subtle way. The earlier entry boasted of their Bangalore data center, but the afternoon's version now features the Zurich center more prominently and relegates Bangalore to a footnote. Could it be that the company is a little less boastful in their handling of the outsourcing debate than they thought they could be?