Wired describes a supersized server farm (a network/IT facility) in Las Vegas. This caught my eye:
Consider the comic book he penned about his staff, Switchblades: The Dark Ethereals have hacked into Earth’s ionosphere with a plan to destroy the Net! Luckily, Roy, er, Core and his band of super-employees are here to save the day—and keep the world safe for truth, knowledge, and the entrepreneurial way.
Early in my career we did an ethnographic study of senior IT professionals. During a visit to the converted-warehouse offices of a San Francisco clothing manufacturer, the CIO took us on a tour, and as we arrived at an appendage-like access-way, with a small wooden ladder cum staircase going through a heavy curtain. Before we entered what turned out to be the IT department and server room, our host said “…and this is the Batcave.”
That one word led to a significant insight about the identity of the IT professional: talented and heroic science-y types who labor unrecognized far behind the scenes, ready to emerge and save the city when they receive the signal. This informed a new segmentation of their market and some better understanding of how to position their evolving product line.
Although the company is gone from that space (it’s now loft-condo-something), it’s interesting to see that our finding still holds true today.