Baidu Joins Facebook’s Open Compute Project

(iChinaStock News) See update note at bottom of story

Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU), China’s largest search engine, joined the Open Compute Project (OCP) last month, an open source movement initiated by Facebook.

OCP is an industry-wide group that is working to design and enable the delivery of the most efficient server, storage, and data centre hardware designs for scalable computing.

The OCP has released a list of some of its first set of official members:

Some examples include hardware suppliers like Intel, ASUS, Dell, Mellanox, and Huawei; software suppliers like Red Hat, Cloudera and Future Facilities; enablers like DRT, Hyve (Synnex), Nebula, Baidu, and Silicon Mechanics; consumers like Facebook, Mozilla, Rackspace, Netflix, NTT Data, Tivit, the ODCA, and Goldman Sachs. Also participating from an institutional perspective are organisations like Georgia Tech University, North Carolina State University, and CERN.

Baidu was one of several companies to contribute to the Open Rack specifications of the OCP, according to Facebook.

The Facebook-Baidu Relationship: Subject to Much Speculation
The Facebook-Baidu relationship has been the subject of rampant media speculation, starting from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s personal visit to China in December last year.

Earlier rumours said Facebook may enter China market via a partnership with Baidu. But most industry watchers believe such a partnership is unlikely, as such a venture would be subject to intense regulatory pressure from Chinese authorities.

Update Note: Our original piece, based on a report by Sina Tech, contained a number of inaccuracies brought to our attention by a Facebook employee. Our piece–now corrected–formerly implied that access to OCP specs and designs required a partnership, when they can in fact be freely adopted by anyone in the world. And neither AMD nor Zynga is a member of the Open Compute Project.

By Vincent Wang, iChinaStock.com

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