Earlier today, I gave a talk at LADIS 2008 (Large Scale Distributed Systems & Middleware) in Yorktown Heights, New York. The program for LADIS is at: http://www.cs.cornell.edu/projects/ladis2008/program.html. The slides presented are posted to: http://mvdirona.com/jrh/TalksAndPapers/JamesRH_Ladis2008.pdf.
The quick summary of the talk: Hosted services will be a large part of enterprise information processing and consumer services with economies of scale of 5 to 10x over small scale deployments. Enterprise deployments are very different from high scale services. The former is people-dominated from a cost perspective whereas people-costs are not in the top 4 major factors in the services world.
The talk looks at limiting factors in the economic application of resources to services, one of which is power. Looking at power in more detail, we go through where power goes in a modern data center inventorying power disapation in power distribution, cooling and server load in a high-scale data center.
Then it steps through a sampling of high scale services implementation techniques and possible optimizations including modular data centers, multi-data center failover replacing single data center redundancy, NAND flash bridging the memory to disk chasm, graceful degradation mode, admission control, power yield management, and resource consumption shaping.