Technobabble: Ireland's ascent as data center haven not pure luck

Pregame crash busts March Madness brackets

Technobabble is our look at the weird, wonderful and wildly creative aspects of technology and the tech industry. If you have any babble, feel free to email directly or reach out on Twitter.

CBS had a a hiccup Thursday leading up to the March Madness tip off when CBSSports.com suffered an outage around 11 a.m. ET. The first game was set to tip at 12:10 p.m.

As people hustled online to fill out last minute brackets for the NCAA tournament, CBSSports.com went down, causing some to miss the noon deadline to complete their brackets, Fortune reports.

"During the hour before the first tip, service was down due to overwhelming demand," said a CBS Spokesperson in a statement. "We certainly regret the outage but are pleased to say that service has since been restored."

Following the CBS outage, the lesson here really is to fill out your bracket early and not wait an hour before tip off.

Inclined toward basketball or not, millions fill out March Madness brackets, vying for the stakes in public, company or even family pools. Sure, the odds are not exactly in people's favor, but the lure of riches are too good to pass up. Just like the other amateurs — or experts — filling out brackets, the odds are 1 in 9.2 quintillion of precisely predicting every winner in the tournament.

The feat is so unlikely, Warren Buffett used to offer $1 billion dollars for a perfect bracket. Now he is offering a million for life to a Berkshire Hathaway employee who correctly picks the Sweet 16.

Even with the best data, March Madness perfection requires luck and the ability to expect the unexpected. As evidenced by my first round thus far, my gut instinct in predicting upsets did not go so well.  

Naomi Eide's March Madness bracket, 2017.
CBS Sports

Luck of the Irish

Given Friday is St. Patrick's Day, and the one day of the year where the Irish comes out in us all — even the not so Irish — it is worth briefly mentioning that Ireland is the data center capital of Europe.

As the demand for internet services has increased, to fall inline with privacy regulations and to help avoid latency, service providers have opened up data centers around the world. In particular, companies look to create large data centers in Ireland.

That is not just by happenstance. As Silicon Republic notes, Ireland is quickly becoming the "data capital" of Europe because of both the temperate weather and the vast space for server warehouses.

Infrastructure benefits aside, there is also a lure because of Ireland's reputation as a "tax haven" with legislation favoring the establishment and operation of companies, according to Investopedia.

So, looking for scores of server farms? Ireland is the place to be. Amazon is planning a 223,000 square foot data center campus in Dublin, the Irish Independent reports. The project is reportedly valued at about $1.07 billion and is expected to begin later this year.

Google also has a large data center presence in Ireland, but its data centers are adorned with murals to create a more lively exterior than the boxy buildings usually have. For the design, Artist Fuchsia MacAree took inspiration from Google's reliance on fresh air, rather than mechanical, cooling for the data center.

Obligatory robot news

The total value of all robots in the U.S. is $732 billion, a value larger than the entire Swiss economy, researchers reported this week, according to Fast Company.

The rise in the robot economy stems from increased American investment in the technology, which was up 30% between 2011 and 2015. Researches expect the increase in investment to continue, particularly in the transportation, financial services and real estate market.

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Filed Under: Software Infrastructure
Top image credit: Wikimedia Commons