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Apple Plans $1 Billion iDataCenter

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the swimming-with-the-big-fish dept.

Businesses 260

1sockchuck writes "Apple is planning a major East Coast data center to boost the capacity of its online operations, and may invest more than $1 billion in building and operating the huge server farm. That's nearly twice what Google and Microsoft typically invest in their massive cloud computing centers. The scope of the project raises interesting questions about Apple's plans, and has politicians in North Carolina jumping through hoops to pass incentives to win the project. The proposed NC incentives build on a package for Google that later proved controversial."

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Frosty (-1, Offtopic)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102723)

Fist Prose

Re:Frosty (-1, Offtopic)

Longjmp (632577) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102823)

iVoid

Re:Frosty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103345)

It's for streaming music. They've realised that people are going to stop buying music. Spotify pwns. When Apple releases a streaming service I expect the bandwidth usage to be massive.

let me guess (0, Troll)

WaXHeLL (452463) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102729)

Tax Rebates, Free / Discounted Land, and a host of other incentives?

Re:let me guess (4, Funny)

evil_aar0n (1001515) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102795)

And virgins. Don't forget the virgins. No deal is complete without them.

Re:let me guess (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28102865)

How many virgins are we talking about here? This is North Carolina after all...

Re:let me guess (4, Insightful)

rwwyatt (963545) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102897)

Good Luck finding virgins in North Carolina! oh Wait, There must be 72 slashdotters somewhere in NC.

Re:let me guess (4, Insightful)

Laxori666 (748529) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103083)

I like how this was modded "insightful".

Re:let me guess (4, Insightful)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103493)

Yes, but why was this modded insightful?

Re:let me guess (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103643)

Slashdotting from Raleigh, NC. 25 Year old virgin. Recovering Germaphobe. iCheers!

Re:let me guess (5, Informative)

drquoz (1199407) | more than 5 years ago | (#28104029)

I'm in NC! *raises hand* Don't ask about the other hand....

Re:let me guess (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103185)

Apple is a computer company. They have more virgins than they know what to do with.

Re:let me guess (3, Funny)

bluesatin (1350681) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103421)

No, no, no, you've got it wrong. These are APPLE geeks, they're cool and get laid all the time... Right?

Re:let me guess (1)

molarmass192 (608071) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103983)

You have to twist it a bit and say that you're editing your latest production for Universal Pictures on that MacBook or writing the screenplay for book X on that MacBook. If you data mine the Playboy archives for hottie turn ons, computers, MacBooks included, appear exactly 0 times.

Re:let me guess (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28104071)

The only virgins in NC are 12 yr olds that can out run the male members in the family.

Tax breaks for the rich? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28102829)

From TFA:

would offer income tax breaks to companies that invest more than $1 billion over nine years

Why should a company receive more tax breaks because they've gotten big enough to be able to drop $1 billion on a data center? If they can afford $1 billion, they can afford whatever taxes apply. How about you cut the taxes for small companies who struggle because of monopolies like Apple? Stop helping the companies who obviously don't need the help, and start helping the businesses who are risking having their doors closed forever because of a shitty economy.

Frankly, I'm sick of seeing the rich get the gold platter treatment.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (5, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102919)

Its simple, this will create jobs. Apple is going to hire a massive amount of contractors to build this, probably have to hire some consultants, have to buy the hardware, etc. All this goes to help other companies and the economy. Honestly, it makes more sense to just abolish most taxes and establish a pay-per-use system and abolish all government granted monopolies, but thats just me....

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (5, Insightful)

j1mmy (43634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103383)

Business taxes should be the first to go, because businesses don't pay taxes. Their customers do. The only thing governments accomplish when they tax businesses is they raise the cost of goods and services.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (3, Informative)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103591)

Business taxes should be the first to go, because businesses don't pay taxes. Their customers do. The only thing governments accomplish when they tax businesses is they raise the cost of goods and services.

A) Why not abolish personal income taxes first?
B) What makes you think that corporations won't just keep prices the same and use the difference to pad their profit margin?

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103731)

B) In any reasonably free market, where price elasticity of demand is neither infinite nor zero, any tax break (or tax) will be split between the business and the consumer. The business can sell more by lowering its prices (and you can bet its competitors are interested in doing the same too).

Now, that said, you probably don't want business taxes to be zero, because businesses cost the state money one way or another. It would be better for the costs to be in line with what what they pay. You'd also like things to be reasonably fair, and not have one business pay all sorts of taxes while another gets things for free, otherwise you're just distorting the labor market and making business success a function of lobbyists, friends in government, and political popularity, rather than business merit.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

j1mmy (43634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103867)

A) I'd like to eliminate both! Businesses contribute a very small portion of tax revenues already. The potential for job creation and general economic growth that would result has the potential to bring in that lost revenue and then some through personal income taxes.

B) Have you heard about this thing called competition? It's when businesses compete for greater shares of a market by lowering prices or increasing the quality of their product.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

lordofwhee (1187719) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103955)

I live in the US, what is this "competition" you speak of?

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

j1mmy (43634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103989)

Have you heard of Ford? What about GM? They compete! Believe it or not, they make similar products targeted at particular markets. They use marketing and pricing in an attempt to gain a greater share of these markets from eachother and other companies in these same markets.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

Rob Riggs (6418) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103741)

The only thing governments accomplish when they tax businesses is they raise the cost of goods and services.

Oh, they accomplish more than that. Taxes provide infrastructure that allow people access to consume those goods and services.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

j1mmy (43634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103789)

Infrastructure is usually tied to gas and/or property taxes.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

gb506 (738638) | more than 5 years ago | (#28104035)

I realize you were referring to business tax, but the amount of income taxes I pay exceeds the amount I pay per year for my own "infrastructure", namely, my housing, vehicle, insurance and clothing. I don't believe that paying the federal government more than I pay for a nice, 12y/o, 3bdrm ranch style on 2 acres of land, decent car, and passable wardrobe can be considered a worthy "investment" by any stretch of the imagination. It's just way beyond BS.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (4, Insightful)

cowscows (103644) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103743)

If you eliminate business taxes, then customers are still going to pay those taxes, the government is going to get that money somehow. It's just that instead of paying through the purchases of goods and services, we'd get taxed directly to make up the difference.

I'd prefer that the businesses pay for their share of the nation's infrastructure via taxes. Sure, they're going to pass that cost along to me in their prices, but then when I'm spending money, I'm making a more informed decision, because what I'm being charged better reflects the true cost of the production of those goods/services.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (0)

j1mmy (43634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103813)

You're right, you'll spend the money either way. Eliminating business taxes has numerous benefits, however. It will eliminate the need for offshore tax havens, bringing mountains of capital back to the states. It will eliminate the need for businesses to jump through hoops for tax planning purposes, vastly reduce compliance and accounting costs, etc. Businesses spend great deals of time and energy dealing with the tax system, distracting them from the actual work the business does. I'd say it would be a huge benefit. And what better way to attact more investment and domestic economic growth than to dump business taxes?

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (2, Insightful)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102985)

They're also big enough that they can build their data center in any other state.

Last year, Maryland raised marginal tax rate on millionaires. This year, the number of millionaires in Maryland dropped by 30% and total tax revenue collected from them dropped as well.

You can complain all you want, but if you look at the numbers you'll find the top 1% of earners pay 40% (or more) of income taxes.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1, Informative)

McGiraf (196030) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103273)

"You can complain all you want, but if you look at the numbers you'll find the top 1% of earners pay 40% (or more) of income taxes."

I have no more source than you but my guess is that they end up paying less of a percentage of their total income in taxes than the average anyway. They just have so much of it it's not even funny.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

j1mmy (43634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103375)

The point is that tax revenue suffers. This has nothing to do with how much the rich pay relative to their income, it has to do with how much they contribute to the state relative to total tax receipts.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (3, Insightful)

McGiraf (196030) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103497)

If the wealth is more spread you do not see billionaires moving out of a state to go to a less taxed state. They have to much money and to much power. If it keeps up like it's going now this 1% will pay more than they pay now, but they will have 99% of the wealth. This is not sustainable. Let them all move to Monaco.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

j1mmy (43634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103939)

Those rich people contribute a great amount to government coffers, but consume relatively little. As revenue declines, services suffer. If the top earners continue to leave a state, the revenue will continue to go down and poverty will get worse as the government has fewer funds available to pay for social services.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

BikeHelmet (1437881) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103855)

I don't quite follow.

Millionaire A stays, and pays more money. Millionaire B leaves, and pays the same amount of money in a different state.

End result - more tax revenue, spread around the whole country.

But if you don't give a crap about the other states, then by all means do whatever is best for your own state, and just your own state.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (2, Insightful)

jo42 (227475) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103947)

You completely missed the point.

Millionaire A stays, and pays more money. Millionaire B leaves, and pays less amount of money in a different state.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (5, Insightful)

McGiraf (196030) | more than 5 years ago | (#28104165)

The point, if you ignore the Monaco part, it's that if the wealth is mostly controlled by a few they have the power influence legislation to accommodate them by threatening to leave (people or corp.). By using this power they grab even more of the wealth and more of the power. Better ditribution of wealth prevents this from happening.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103659)

So.... An inquiry into your premise. If they're all indeed doing something wrong and evil, why don't you try to pass laws against it, arrest them and put them in jail? Instead of just saying "rich people stink..... let's use that as an excuse take their money!!!"

And if not, what's wrong with them having money?

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103739)

yes, that's because of limits on social security (which some people pretend isn't a tax but a forced retirement program) and lower tax rates on capital gains and dividends. Oh, and maybe better accountants and deductions for charitable donations, etc.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (5, Insightful)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103575)

Last year, Maryland raised marginal tax rate on millionaires. This year, the number of millionaires in Maryland dropped by 30% and total tax revenue collected from them dropped as well.

Are you implying that many millions in Maryland left for other states because of the tax? Have you considered that perhaps there were many millionaires who lost a lot of money, and therefore were no longer millionaires?

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (5, Informative)

jcr (53032) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103725)

Are you implying that many millions in Maryland left for other states because of the tax? Have you considered that perhaps there were many millionaires who lost a lot of money, and therefore were no longer millionaires?

I'm sure that the crash was a big factor, but it's quite easy for anyone in Maryland who wants to pay less taxes to just move across the border into Delaware, Virginia, or Pennsylvania.

I know several people who've moved out of California for that reason.

-jcr

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

russlar (1122455) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103993)

I know several people who've moved out of California for that reason.

As opposed to the people who move out of California for other reasons?

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103587)

I guess it would vary for local areas (because the incomes of the 1% and the 99% will impact the taxes paid by quite a bit), but at the federal level, it is more like 25% of income taxes:

http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/88xx/doc8885/EffectiveTaxRates.shtml#1011535 [cbo.gov]

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103625)

Whoops, the top 1% do pay about 36% of federal personal income taxes. Somehow, even though they also pay most corporate taxes, they manage to only pay 25% of overall taxes. I guess FICA is some of that, but it doesn't seem like it should be such a huge effect.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (5, Insightful)

slamb (119285) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103661)

Last year, Maryland raised marginal tax rate on millionaires. This year, the number of millionaires in Maryland dropped by 30% and total tax revenue collected from them dropped as well.

You seem to be trying to lead readers into believing that the tax increase caused the drop in millionaires. If so, you're badly mistaken or dishonest, and judging by your post's score some people were stupid enough to fall for it.

Correlation is not causation! larry bagina failed to mention other, more significant factors. Namely that we're in a recession! The S&P 500 index went down 36% between 2008-01-01 to 2009-01-01! Many, many, many people's income and net worth has gone down (though not all of us were so lucky as to be above $1 million to begin with), and tax revenue has fallen all across the US! Several major states are broke! Given the economic climate, it's ridiculous to even suggest that the tax increase is at all related to the drop in millionaires without doing much better, such as:

  • showing theoretically that the tax increase was significant enough to cause so many people to no longer be millionaires.
  • showing that many millionaires have moved out of Maryland.
  • using a comparable state with no tax increase as a control, demonstrating that Maryland's fall was much greater. (This is hard, though, because there are so many things different between states, so it's a tough argument to make that another is "comparable".)

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

chill (34294) | more than 5 years ago | (#28104067)

Either way it demonstrates the sheer stupidity of "tax the rich" as a reliable source of income. The State was taking a beating with the economy, yet somehow the idea that "the rich" were also taking the same beating never occurred to the Maryland legislature.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

idobi (820896) | more than 5 years ago | (#28104135)

And you're confusing net worth with income. My net worth is significantly less than it was a year ago, but my income hasn't changed. However, the fact is that many people from Maryland do flee to Deleware or Virginia to pay lower income taxes or property taxes.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (3, Informative)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103685)

You can complain all you want, but if you look at the numbers you'll find the top 1% of earners pay 40% (or more) of income taxes.

And to put things in perspective, the top 1% nationally earn *440 times more than the avg person in the bottom 50%.
Not to mention that Maryland has some of the richest counties in the country.

*in 2007, I'm not sure what the 2008 number is

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (1)

4D6963 (933028) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103753)

So let's see, the millionaires who'd rather stay and pay more stay and pay more, and the ones who don't move out and pay the same thing in another state? Globally for the US it's a win.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (2, Informative)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103317)

Well, giving tax breaks to businesses is Doing Something, which makes headlines, which helps get politicians elected, even though in practice the case for doing so is usually pretty marginal. Great deal if you're the business, mind you. Check out the Dell plant near Winston-Salem which got a boatload of incentives, and then started cutting jobs when the going got rough...

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (4, Insightful)

Fastolfe (1470) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103439)

This isn't about helping Apple. It's about helping the local communities that would benefit from Apple building a massive datacenter there. Local people get hired to do the construction. Some get hired to operate it. Others relocate just to work there. These workers need housing, restaurants and retail. This is money that flows from Apple, to its employees and contractors, to your town's businesses, to your town's residents. If you want your local economy to improve, it's in your best interests to give companies like Apple an incentive to build in your town, instead of someone else's. This means things like tax breaks.

Re:Tax breaks for the rich? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103815)

Yeah but how else can you afford all the spiffy perks? Look how well Google does... did.

I however have never seen an Xserve or any Apple "servers" in my 15 years in the industry; so I'm also kind of curious who Apple thinks their customers are going to be.

dollars != capacity (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28102885)

"The $1B price tag is nearly twice what Microsoft and Google typically invest..."

Is that because Apple is using its own hardware? Google and MS should be able to get a hell of a lot cheaper hardware using commodity mobos than Apple using its own expensive machines. Of course, Apple's margins are 50%, so one wonders if they're charging themselves retail or wholesale.

Re:dollars != capacity (1)

bobstreo (1320787) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103409)

And lets not forget the lesson of ma.gnolia, running on Mac Servers...

It sorta makes sense to build in NC, what are the chances a major earthquake
will take out the CA datacenter at the same time a hurricane takes out the NC data center?

I'll wait for the netcraft report on their servers.

Yahoo is talking about opening a data center in Upstate NY, 150 new jobs, I think the Public Service
Commission was going to pay them to buy power as part of an incentivel.

Of course (5, Funny)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102889)

may invest more than $1 billion in building and operating the huge server farm. That's nearly twice what Google and Microsoft typically invest in their massive cloud

Of course, this is Apple, all Apple hardware is going to me more expensive then typical PC hardware. On the plus side all machines can be running OS X.

Re:Of course (4, Funny)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102929)

dammit i was gonna use that troll!

Re:Of course (1, Redundant)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102941)

Actually hoping for a funny mod, but eh, I have enough karma to burn some every now and then.

Re:Of course (1, Troll)

sixteenbitsamurai (1070810) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103227)

Of course, this is Apple, all Apple hardware is going to me more expensive then typical PC hardware.

Not if they use hackintoshes.

Re:Of course (0, Flamebait)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103975)

LOL even a joke about trolling got modded funny but a joke about psystar was just tooo far!

Re:Of course (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103929)

Apple wouldn't use its own hardware for a Data Ceneter -- what are you, nuts?

Costs twice as much (1)

13bPower (869223) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102903)

Costs twice as much, but will be half as big (assuming they eat their own dogfood and go all xserv).

The states don't win on these deals.... (4, Insightful)

nrasch (303043) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102921)

It cracks me up to keep seeing states jumping through hoops and giving away all sorts of tax revenues for these big companies to set up shop. Then, later on, the company reveals that only about 30 jobs are going to be created in actuality, and the state has lost more than if they had just let the deal pass them by.

I have yet to hear of a happy ending for one of these deals for the state, and I'd be happy to be corrected if some one has a link....

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (4, Interesting)

Shados (741919) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102975)

Funnier is something that happened here a while ago. A very large telecom company that everyone here has heard of opened an employee center after being given a rediculous amount of benefits, tax deductions, paid lease, etc for a few years.

They did hire as many people as they said they would. Then came the day when the deductions and all the free stuff ran out, as per the contract. On that very day, they announced they were closing all operations in that area and fired everyone.

Fun stuff.

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (2, Informative)

value_added (719364) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103063)

Dunno about telecoms, but I think it's safe to call that the Walmart model.

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (1)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103499)

As opposed to what? The Chrysler Automotive model?

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28104047)

As opposed to what? The Chrysler Automotive model?

Is that when the government gives tax deductions and benefits to a company that lays off all its workers?

Because I mean, when a company gets breaks for opening up a plant, that's just graft and corruption. I can comprehend how those deals happen. But when a company gets bailouts for firing people, that's more like publicly financed masochism.

Does it not occur to Uncle Sam to maybe hold out for a better deal? Like one that doesn't involve him getting kicked in the balls by the people he's giving our money to?

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (2, Insightful)

neoform (551705) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103969)

How easy do you think it is to move a $1,000,000,000 data center? I'd venture to say it's not even possible without spending more than the actual cost of the center.

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28104041)

Also see Dell and Edmonton. And I'm sure there's hundreds more

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103217)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EA_Montreal
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ubisoft_Montreal
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eidos_Montreal

In short, subsidies made Montreal (and the province of Quebec in general) one of the top hubs of video game production in the world. Similar measures in British Columbia have also contributed in positioning Canada in the video games industry.

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (1)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103391)

Check out the Winston-Salem, NC Dell plant. $280 million in tax breaks, and now they're laying people off. The baseball-stadium deal is a boondoggle too - basically the movers and shakers in town patting the movers and shakers on the back...

Re:The states don't win on these deals.... (1)

snaz555 (903274) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103601)

It cracks me up to keep seeing states jumping through hoops and giving away all sorts of tax revenues for these big companies to set up shop. Then, later on, the company reveals that only about 30 jobs are going to be created in actuality, and the state has lost more than if they had just let the deal pass them by.

Does this include the verbal open offers for officials who helped secure the deal?

Surprise? (5, Insightful)

Longjmp (632577) | more than 5 years ago | (#28102947)

So, Apple is changing from a hardware company to a media company. Who would have guessed that after iTunes, iPods and iPhone (iPad next?) Seriously.

Re:Surprise? (1, Troll)

vivek7006 (585218) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103079)

As their media operations expand, inevitably they will also start providing pr0n. iFuck anyone?

Re:Surprise? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103153)

being in slashdot, it saddens me to say, you probably don't

naaaa I'm kidding it doesn't.

Re:Surprise? (1)

Longjmp (632577) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103175)

You may not know this but there was once a "game" where you had to "pleasure" a girl ... running on a 512k Mac. I'm sure I have the floppy disk somewhere in my attic, I just don't know where to find a floppy drive. heh.

Re:Surprise? (1)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103429)

When they finally start making the majority of their money via media rather than hardware, will they then start selling OS/X unbundled for use on specific hardware platforms?

Re:Surprise? (1)

Longjmp (632577) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103573)

Dream on. As long as they are making good money from their hardware they would be stupid to do otherwise. Not saying anything specific about Apple, just about companies in general.

Expensive boxes! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28102989)

Well, of course it costs $1B. They're using nothing but Xserves. If Dell was building it, it'd only cost $172M...

Re:Expensive boxes! (1)

Sparky McGruff (747313) | more than 5 years ago | (#28104063)

And, of course, Apple pays full retail for its own hardware and software.

Streaming Gaming (4, Interesting)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103015)

I think Apple will take a page out of Nintendo's book and reinvent casual, portable gaming. Imagine streamed games to your iPhone?

Re:Streaming Gaming (2, Insightful)

neoform (551705) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103985)

They better work on battery life then. If I play games and use the internet on my iPhone for more than an hour I've taken about 50% of my battery away.

What For? iStupid? (-1, Troll)

His Shadow (689816) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103151)

Who is reading Slashdot these days? More than the required amount of mouth breathers? Apple is the most effective and popular online retailer of music, and has 30000+ apps in the App Store for it's iPhone and it's not obvious what an Apple datacenter would be used for? Give your heads a shake.

Re:What For? iStupid? (1)

Reality Master 201 (578873) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103335)

You missed the slash-memo - it's cool to rag on Apple now and say nice stuff about Windows 7.

Re:What For? iStupid? (1)

jo42 (227475) | more than 5 years ago | (#28104003)

That's because I bought an iPhone and iMac recently.

It's for the ipad... (3, Interesting)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103271)

You know, that mini-touchscreen tablet that everyone thinks is coming? Instead of allowing people to use google-docs and discover that the touch interface doesn't work with regular software, Apple has been developing its own cloud computing software applications. With your $1,500 purchase of $300 of hardware, you get to use Apple's cluster-farm to write your iDocs (assuming your net connection stays up).

Re:It's for the ipad... (1)

jcr (53032) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103605)

Not likely.

Time sharing was a good idea back when CPUs were expensive. Its time has passed.

-jcr

We consumers need to demand new power (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103423)

If you think about it, data centers in the US must be Green.

Especially if they are built by Google, MSFT, or Apple.

We should demand that 100 percent of the anticipated max power draw of all "needed" data centers come from new construction of alternate energy sources - e.g. tidal, solar, wind, geothermal,hydro - that is literally BUILT in America to provide new power.

The days of power centers being built as if it doesn't matter that they contribute to global warming and help fund terrorists are over.

Demand it.

Consumers = Power.

Re:We consumers need to demand new power (1)

jcr (53032) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103697)

Consumers = Power.

So, buy what you want according to whatever criteria matter to you, and I'll do likewise. My own criteria are more about whether the goods and services offered are something I want, rather than whether they meet your call for tree-hugger brownie points.

-jcr

Re:We consumers need to demand new power (2, Insightful)

dhavleak (912889) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103903)

If you think about it, data centers in the US must be Green.

Especially if they are built by Google, MSFT, or Apple.

We should demand that 100 percent of the anticipated max power draw of all "needed" data centers come from new construction of alternate energy sources - e.g. tidal, solar, wind, geothermal,hydro - that is literally BUILT in America to provide new power.

The days of power centers being built as if it doesn't matter that they contribute to global warming and help fund terrorists are over.

Umm.. you (we) don't need to *demand* anything here. Operational cost is the single most important metric of operating a datacenter. More so than even storage cost (which is a contributing factor to operating costs). Any company operating datacenter(s) is already looking into every manner imaginable to cut the cost of powering it. If a non-green cost is significantly cheaper, the company will simply not go green. If you tax stuff to make greenness more attractive (say a carbon tax) they will automatically shift to green sources. If the green source is cheaper to begin with, they will go green all the way.

For the environmentalists -- don't spend cycles on forcing people to adopt stuff that doesn't work for them. People in general want to do the right thing. You just have to spend your cycles on making the green thing the right thing. Make the environmentally friendly option equal to or cheaper than the non-environmentally option, and people will automatically do the right thing.

wow... (1)

Mants (1388385) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103569)

Wow, with this Ill be able to use filters in photoshop sooo fast!

1B datacenter explanation (3, Funny)

Herby Sagues (925683) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103677)

Maybe the datacenter is not that big. Maybe it is just a $500M datacenter but they plan to power it with Macs.

I figured out the Data Center Configuration! (5, Funny)

failedlogic (627314) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103707)

Pffft! This is so easy to figure out, they don't need a veil of secrecy. I've already figured out the datacenter setup.

I decided Apple should setup a lot of Mac Pros for their data center. Reason: Cost to Performance Ratio. Don't go telling me Apple is more expensive than Dell. You cannot compare the two since Dell does not sell AppleCare.

I went on the Apple Website, to order 999 Maxed out Mac Pro systems with RAID cards, 32 GB of RAM and max hard drives, and 3 year Apple care. Did the same thing with some Xserves (but this has support contract + something called a "Promise VTrak E-Class 16x SAS RAID Subsystem"). Whatever. My only concern is maxing out the shopping cart so that I know I am getting the best possible configuration. Note: Apple's systems are more expensive in the Europe which is why they are setting up in the US.

I also included next business day shipping (at 999 systems its $5,000 and BTW is was the same price as 2 business day shipping so I'm not splurging).

Here's my tally:
999 Mac Pro (Maxed out) Total = ~ $16,000,000
999 XServe (Maxed out)Total = ~ $86,000,000

So for $1 Billion, Apple could have

(1,000,000,000/16,000,000) * 99 = 6,187.5 Mad Pro Systems
(1,000,000,000 / 86,000,000) = 11.627907 * 99 = 1,151.16279 XServe Systems

Footnote: Use these numbers with a grain of salt as I explain below.

1) I didn't account if Apple will give themselves a discount. If they wait for back-to-school time, they might give themselves a free iPod and printer with each system purchase. Probably not the Xserves though. All the more in favor of the Mac Pro.

2) Also, I used Google to do the math. Since they likely want to compete with Apple, they might be up to what I am doing (even before it is indexed) and are intentionally fudging the numbers.

Re:I figured out the Data Center Configuration! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103821)

Dude, don't blame google for your shitty formulae.

Re:I figured out the Data Center Configuration! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28103847)

...and where were you planning on putting these servers, with your 0 remaining budget for a physical structure?

(I suspect you're gunning for a funny tag, but still...)

Re:I figured out the Data Center Configuration! (4, Funny)

c_forq (924234) | more than 5 years ago | (#28104013)

Also, I used Google to do the math. Since they likely want to compete with Apple, they might be up to what I am doing (even before it is indexed) and are intentionally fudging the numbers.

It's in the lab features, it's called under the "Pre-Index" feature. They use a precognitive algorithm to predict how the internet will change before the changes are posted. I've heard rumors that their are multiple precognitive algorithms though, and that they don't always agree.

Dear Apple... (0, Offtopic)

BorgCopyeditor (590345) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103803)

Don't be too proud of this technological terror you've constructed. The ability to boost the capacity of your online operations is insignificant next to the power of the Force.

It's not really worth $1bn (1)

therufus (677843) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103865)

The data center will be built in China at a cost of approximately $250m then shipped to the US. Technical support for this data center will be in India and when the data center crashes, a "sad face" will be projected into the clouds above much like the bat-signal. The $1bn price tag is simply because it's made of funky white plastic, all staff members will be lit so only their silhouettes are showing and it will have an Apple logo on it.

Think different.

Another relocation incentive deal? (5, Interesting)

ErichTheRed (39327) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103875)

First, I've never been a big fan of these side deals that state and local governments make to entice businesses to relocate or expand to their area. I understand why they do it, but there's a flip side that a lot of people don't realize.

  • Several posts have already pointed out instances where a company moves in, sets up, then closes their operation as soon as the free power/zero taxes run out. This means that all the people who were employed are either unemployed or (if they're lucky) forced to move somewhere else. Companies can play this game as many times as municipalities will allow them to.
  • Especially in economically depressed areas, where the company may be one of the only high-wage employers, what happens when a worker at the company loses their job? If the spouse works, is there any employment opportunity beyond your company and retail/service jobs?
  • On the local front, an employer coming to town and increasing average wages may sound good, but it's only good for the employees of that company. Locals who don't work there have to deal with higher housing, food and other prices. Local businesses have to raise wages to keep up with the newcomer, which means they have to charge customers more.
  • I know a lot of people claim that the rich pay a lot of taxes, but it seems to me that reducing their companies' tax rate makes local budget problems even worse. As good as it would be, running a local government is not free. You need to pay for roads, schools, police, etc. Economically depressed areas that don't spend money on these things stay economically depressed (bad infrastructure, crappy schools and teachers, high crime due to the underfunded police.) Instead of forcing middle class taxpayers to pay more taxes, share the burden with those who can afford it more.

Second, I actually have reverse experience with this. I live in the Northeast, which is not the cheapest place in the country to do business by a long shot. The company I work for has decided to relocate a lot of their work down South. That's great if you love the heat and don't care about moving. Tech workers are often the first to consider in any move like this -- I seriously think executives believe a stereotype that all tech workers live in a one-bedroom apartment or with Mom, have posessions that fit in half a U-Haul, don't care if they live in Boston, MA or Branson, MO and will move wherever the company tells them to. This has happened to me at 2 companies before (I'm on Offered Relocation #3 now,) and I'm not going (again.) That decision boiled down to a few things for me. First, I really like living where I live -- I don't think I could be happy where they're relocating. Second, if I did move, it'd be one-way. Sure, you can sell your house in the Northeast and buy 2.5 of them in the South, but you'll never be able to move back without huge sacrifice. Third, even if I kept my salary, there' s no guarantee I'll keep my job. Companies aren't the same way about their employees anymore -- even if you do an awesome job and have a long tenure with the company, they won't blink at the idea of letting you go. Then what? The local market salaries are 50% less than they are back home. Fortunately, I'd have savings from not spending all my money on a new house, but I know way too many people who would move down and live like kings on the salary differential.

As I said, I definitely get why municipalities jump at the chance to get a new employer in town, and why employers pursue these tax incentive deals. But just like they taught the MBAs in Economics 101, everything has externalities and nothing is free!

Re:Another relocation incentive deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28104149)

Hey, I'm out of a job and I live down South. Can I have your job? Where do I send the resume?

Some 20 years ago, we bought a large company and moved it down to North Carolina. People were selling condos in New Jersey and having trouble finding expensive enough houses to roll their money into without having to pay taxes on it. Contractors loved it.

Re:Another relocation incentive deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28104155)

Sadly, nothing is not free. It can actually cost quite a lot. Just ask any of the places with nothing.

It Costs More Because... (0, Redundant)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 5 years ago | (#28103925)

It costs more than Microsoft or Google because Apple is insisting on only using XServes.
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