20th > October > 2002 Archive

BlueArc in the F1 fast lane

The Register's new Enterprise Storage Channel Formula 1 team British-American Racing (B.A.R) has bought 16TB of high performance storage from NAS specialist BlueArc. The $600,000 SiliconServer Si8000 system will store CADCAM files for B.A.R's designers, and goes live at the end of this month. Motor racing has become a major consumer of IT and of storage in particular. Some of this is CADCAM files, but today's Formula 1 cars are also equipped with hundreds of sensors, with wireless links relaying huge amounts of telemetry back to the pits for analysis. B.A.R says it chose BlueArc storage after tests showed that it was up to eight times faster at saving files than the existing set-up, and that it was faster to save to the SiliconServer than to local storage. "Formula 1 is a performance-driven industry, and we actively seek every competitive advantage available," says Roberto Volo, B.A.R's head of IT. The deal is BlueArc's first in Formula 1, and the company's UK general manager Blair Innes says it is all down to a decision to eschew Intel chips and instead develop its own high performance silicon, specifically for NAS. "The majority of Formula One sales are advertising for the vendor concerned," he adds. "The advantage B.A.R gets from our kit is so great they have actually paid money for it." ®
Bryan Betts, 20 Oct 2002

Freeserve slashes ADSL to £27.99

Freeserve has cut the cost of its broadband service to £27.99 a month it announced today but denies it's a knee-jerk reaction to recent price-cutting in the sector. The move to cut the cost of its service by £2 a month comes less than two weeks after rival AOL dropped the price of its broadband service from £34.99 a month to £27.99 a month. Keith Hawkins, managing director of marketing at Freeserve, says: "No, [this is] not a knee-jerk reaction, but proof of our commitment to competing on the best value, high quality proposition that Internet consumers have come to expect from Freeserve". Whatever. Freeserve is also offering £25 worth of "premium broadband content" for free as part of the deal. The carrot, in this case, includes 150 free text messages, 20 free photos from the its digital photography service and two month's free membership of Freeserve Music Club, which offers music downloads. In its usual modest style, Freeserve reckons this is the "best broadband deal the UK has ever seen". No doubt punters will judge for themselves on that claim. In a statement the company said that "price isn't the only consideration when consumers are choosing their broadband provider". If that's true, why has Freeserve bothered to drop the cost of its service coupled with a £25 giveaway? ® Related Story AOL UK slashes broadband charges
Tim Richardson, 20 Oct 2002