Hey kids, welcome back to your respective cubicles and offices. Raise your hand if any of the following apply to you:

  • Your workspace remains festooned with holiday décor — nothing says January like a cube garnished in tinsel and blinking lights
  • You are wearing one or more pieces of gifted clothing
  • Your waistband is constricting blood flow to your lower extremities despite the fact that you continually insisted on “just a sliver” of any and all holiday treats you encountered during the Christmas season
  • You received at least one “WTH” gift
  • All of the above

Yes indeed, another holiday season has come and gone and it’s time to begin that long slog to Memorial Day, with maybe the odd holiday, that only banks and government employees seem to get off, thrown in for good measure. As they say, “every journey begins with a single step”, so let’s try not to push ourselves too hard right off the bat, and I’ve got just the thing to ease that transition from festive holiday celebrant back to wage slave: my 2016 industry predictions.

Let me begin with the standard disclaimer that these things are hardly ever correct, but reading them can be classified as a work related activity for some of you slower starters out there.

  1. One or more of the following: Google, Apple, Facebook, or Microsoft, will build a data center roughly the size of a small planet. I always like to start with an easy one.
  2. One or more enterprises will announce a five-year data center strategy that will include the building of smaller 1 to 3 MW data centers in tier 2 and 3 markets to specifically serve as edge facilities.
  3. Docker will reign as the year’s most talked about technology that no one understands.
  4. The combination of the IoT and large packet content delivery applications will result in everyone seeing a lot more presentations at trade shows on bandwidth and latency.
  5. More announcements will be made regarding data centers powered by anything other than fossil fuels. Greenpeace will be ecstatic. Birds, large swathes of forests, and nuclear power advocates not so much.
  6. Northern Virginia will secede from the rest of the state and rename itself “Data Center Land.”
  7. Someone, somewhere will procure a DCIM solution and actually figure out how to use it.
  8. The government will continue to discover previously unknown data centers. The administration will blame it on the Republicans.
  9. The cost of water will be a larger factor in data center decisions resulting in airside solutions becoming the preferred mode of cooling in data centers below 5MW.
  10. The privacy of personal information, and the government’s access to it, will be a large issue in the 2016 presidential campaign and people will flock to their social media accounts to tell everyone what they think about it, where they thought about it, how many times they thought about it and who they thought about it with.

So there you have it my friends. My personal glimpse into what the next 12 months will look like for the data center industry. Now gobble down that last piece of fruitcake, purchase a gym membership, and loosen that belt by a notch or two and enjoy what the New Year has to offer.