Q&A: Schwartz says financial meltdown plays into Sun's hands
Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz claims that server vendor was 'preconfigured for the downturn'
Computerworld - Sun Microsystems Inc. CEO Jonathan Schwartz thinks that the economic downturn and Wall Street meltdown will make IT managers more open to change than they may ever have been before. And that is going to benefit Sun and its open-source strategy, contends Schwartz, who is also the company's president and a high-profile blogger. In an interview with Computerworld last Thursday, he spoke about the economy, technology, innovation and servers. Excerpts follow:
What are you doing to help your customers with the economic problems? We are preconfigured for the downturn. If you think about the discretionary expenses that go into operating a data center, first and foremost there's the physical plant itself — the physical space, the power consumption, the HVAC. So all the work that we do around energy efficiency, and on getting optimal performance — a lot of folks say, 'Gee, Sun, why are you so focused on the environment?' It's because the environment ends up being a huge operating expense for our customers. And to the extent that we can help them lower their environmental impact, we're also lowering the economic impact on their businesses. That's clearly Job 1.
The second element of discretionary expense is software licensing, and probably the single biggest software license that our customers have to pay for is [to buy] proprietary databases. Second on that list are proprietary application servers and an application infrastructure. I just was with a customer this morning who didn't recognize that he had roughly 2,000 developers working with MySQL because it wasn't a purchase standard [within his organization], but it had become the de facto [database] standard. He didn't recognize that he could get that level of productivity [from an open-source database].
GlassFish — the same is true for the application server marketplace. OpenSolaris — now that it is multivendor and multiplatform and the source is available, those environments where you don't need support don't have to pay for it. And then we enable customers that want to subscribe in production environments to pay for the supported version. Across the board, whether it is hardware or software, you are going to see some great systems innovations coming from Sun. The [server] platform that we are launching Monday is a good example of what happens when you bring all of that together: You end up reducing customer spending. That, by the way, doesn't mean that you reduce your revenue; it means you take share from your competition.
Do you really expect customers in the near term — with the economic downturn — to, say, swap out an Oracle database and replace it with MySQL? Unquestionably. Now that doesn't mean they are leaving Oracle — Oracle is a fantastic company, and they've built a fantastic database. But there is no longer one-size-fits-all in the enterprise database marketplace.
Wall Street meltdown
- Gartner: Financial meltdown may mean IT hiring freezes, staff cuts
- With market meltdown, which tech firms become predator or prey?
- Wall Street meltdown linked to 'outsourcing' of regulation to private code
- Microsoft's lobbying on bailout bill fails to sway votes
- FAQ: The IT worker's Wall Street meltdown worry list
- Gartner: Wall Street woes won't take down tech
- The tech sector's silent alarm: VC drying up
- Wall Street meltdown to drive risk management investments
- Stock drop smacks tech harder than most
- Wall Street's collapse computer science's gain?
- Bailout won't keep Wall Street from offshoring
- 15 Non-Certified IT Skills Growing in Demand
- How 19 Tech Titans Target Healthcare
- Twitter Suffering From Growing Pains (and Facebook Comparisons)
- Agile Comes to Data Integration
- Slideshow: 7 security mistakes people make with their mobile device
- iOS vs. Android: Which is more secure?
- 11 sure signs you've been hacked
- Pay-as-you-Grow Data Protection: IBM Tivoli's Full-featured Data Protection Suite for Small to Medium Businesses IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Suite for Unified Recovery gives small and medium businesses the opportunity to start out with only the individual solutions...
- Streamline Data Protection with IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Operations Center IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) has been an industry-standard data protection solution for two decades. But, where most competitors focus exclusively on Backup...
- Simplify and Consolidate Data Protection for Better Business Results Learn about IBM® Tivoli® Storage Manager Operations Center, which provides advanced visualization, built-in analytics and integrated workflow automation features that leapfrog traditional backup...
- HP HAVEn: See the big picture in Big Data HP HAVEn is the industry's first comprehensive, scalable, open, and secure platform for Big Data. Enterprises are drowning in a sea of data...
- Live Webcast Best Practices for the Hyperconverged Enterprise Network To the Age of Constant Connectivity and Information overload
- Live Webcast On-demand webinar: "Mobility Mayhem: Balancing BYOD with Enterprise Security" Check out this on-demand webinar to hear Sophos senior security expert John Shier deep dive into how BYOD impacts your enterprise security strategy...
- Live Webcast Endpoint Backup & Restore: Protect Everyone, Everywhere Arek Sokol from the bleeding-edge IT team at Genentech/Roche explains how he leverages cross-platform enterprise endpoint backup in the public cloud as part...
- Meg Whitman presents Unlocking IT with Big Data During this Web Event you will hear Meg Whitman, President and CEO, HP discuss HAVEn - the #1 Big Data platform, as well...
- The New Way to Work Knowledge Vault This Knowledge Vault focuses on how, in today's increasingly virtual world, it's more important than ever to engage deeply with employees, suppliers, partners,... All Topic Center White Papers | Webcasts