GM Opens New Data Center Modeled on Google, Facebook

Less than one year after General Motors Corp. CIO Randy Mott announced that the automaker would stop outsourcing its IT work to other companies, GM today launched a new $130 million data center of its own.

The company is betting that a thoroughly modernized approach to IT — consciously modeled in many ways on advances made by Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. — will help accelerate the turnaround led by chief executive Dan Akerson. The company’s new data center has been designed to be easier to maintain and expand, and less expensive to cool than older, conventional data centers. It also supports a mixture of conventional and experimental technologies that the company hopes will measurably improve its capacity to innovate by doubling the number of IT projects it is able to undertake. But those capabilities will not transform the company unless the rest of the company undergoes an accompanying cultural shift, one that Mr. Mott says has “just begun.”

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