Grab your Gaffi stick, follow those bantha tracks to the Mos Eisely Cantina, down a glass of blue milk, sit back, relax and enjoy everyone’s favorite Bith tune – it’s May the 4th! We are calling out this international holiday, which celebrates Star Wars not because it’s perhaps the most important narrative of our time, but it happens to have major ramifications on the internet infrastructure industry.
It all started on October 19th, 2015 when Star Wars: The Force Awakens tickets went on sale. Even though the prequels didn’t live up to the masses’ expectations (watch them again, we see lots of merit there), fans were fanatical about securing seats for the opening show of the first instalment of a sequel trilogy featuring the original cast they’ve grown to adore over the past 40 years. Almost instantly after online sales went live, a glut of users crashed the top three online ticket retailers. Quoting Obi-Wan, it was “as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror.” Fans that couldn’t obtain tickets for their choice theater must have felt the angst Anakin did when he was given a spot on the Jedi council, but denied the rank of master.
The average person doesn’t care how the Internet reaches them – they just want it available 100% of the time and anything less than light speed is intolerable. They aren’t aware of the complex mesh of subsea cables, data centers, and terrestrial networks that join forces to deliver access, much like most lifeforms in the Star Wars Galaxy didn’t know the Death Star’s super laser was powered by the same crystals Jedi use for their lightsabers. It’s up to our industry to develop the ecosystem of infrastructure that guarantees anyone, no matter if they’re residing in the real-world equivalent of the core worlds or outer rim territories.
In fact, lack of critical infrastructure outside of top tier cities is one of the greatest impediments to a seamless user experience. Akin to the Sith’s quest for unlimited power, Internet users have an unquenchable desire for additional content at their fingertips. At DataSite, we believe in the ubiquitous proliferation of the Internet, so we select sites for our data centers that facilitate the deployment of critical infrastructure in strategic markets that have not received a level of investment anywhere close to that found only in the very largest metropolitan areas. Nothing is more fulfilling to us than laying a digital foundation for young dreamers in remote worlds, gazing at the sunset(s) to fulfill their destinies.
Star Wars didn’t crash the Internet just once. Although the rush was not as severe as it was for The Force Awakens, online retailers had difficulties yet again when ticket sales for Rouge One: A Star Wars Story went live last year. With a new Star Wars movie expected every year for the foreseeable future, we can expect internet infrastructure to take many more beatings. It’s not like Star Wars is unabashedly bombarding the Internet without remorse. Rouge One, the first Star Wars spin off movie released this past December, was actually a love letter to the power of data. The movie, which led us right up to the moment the original Star Wars began, showed us the story we cherish so dearly was actually sprung into motion by a successful mission to retrieve and transmit a large data file.
As you celebrate this important day – in addition to losing yourself in a galaxy far, far away – consider ways our global digital ecosystem should evolve so it could handle something as simple as a movie launching its online ticket sales.
Click here to learn more about our strategic DataSite facilities and may the force (of data) be with you, always.