Blog

12th March 2019

What three words best describe you?

Data can be both our friend and our foe, depending on what it is, who is using it and for what purpose. What is undeniable is that no matter what type of data you can think of, we have access to more of it now than ever before.

Take postcodes as an example. UK postcodes are reasonably specific (there are around 1.7 million postcodes in the UK) but not all countries go to that level of detail. In the USA there are apparently only around 42,000 ZIP codes, and in France and Germany just over 20,000 and 8,000 postal codes respectively. And anyone who has tried to find a specific address with a French postal code will probably have travelled around in circles for a considerable amount of time.

But now the whole world has been mapped into 3mx3m grids, thanks to ‘what3words’. So, you need never get lost again…


Let me introduce what3words

The what3words algorithm takes complex GPS coordinates and converts them into unique three-word addresses representing each 3m square of land. Right across the globe. Which represents, for me at least, an unimaginable amount of data - 57 trillion squares of 3 metres by 3 metres, in fact.

In most of the languages covered by what3words, it uses just 25,000 words to map coordinates, although this rises to 40,000 words in English because it covers the sea as well as land.

So, taking Datum Datacentres as an example, it maps the entrance to our FRN1 data centre as https://map.what3words.com/cured.motivator.amended. Although I could have chosen to map the entrance to our site (https://map.what3words.com/cello.outraged.could) or the main door to our office block (https://map.what3words.com/miles.nametag.hobby). The detail is phenomenal.

Pie in the sky?

Thankfully we have the cloud to contain all this data. And thankfully this sort of cloud is not really in the sky, despite its romantic name coined originally from the standard symbol for the Internet in flow diagrams. Applications, services and resources that process and manage this data are made available to users on demand via the Internet from a cloud computing provider's servers, and these servers sit in data centres. Hyperscale public cloud providers own acres of data centre space globally in which their servers sit, and smaller-scale private and public cloud providers are more likely to place their servers in a colocation data centre such as Datum.

Whatever the size or speciality of the cloud provider, what is undeniable for those who rely on their services, is that the facility they use to house their servers needs to be highly secure, robustly resilient and well-managed. And to satisfy our expectations of instant delivery at our fingertips, the facility must provide a wide choice of robust and resilient connectivity to clients, partners and other clouds in order to meet the hybrid needs of the different types of data milling around in our digital universe.

Datum may have hundreds of these three-word addresses across our site, but we have three fundamental key words that are at the heart of all that we do. They are the reason that our clients choose us, whether they are enterprise organisations, cloud providers or IT service providers - security.resilience.service.

To see how we operate and to understand how we can support your digital optimisation and transformation projects to ensure your IT supports your data needs, call us on 0845 568 0123 or email us at info@datum.co.uk.

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