Wimpy Cores Are Coming to Facebook. But Whose Cores?

Amir Michael, hardware design manager at Facebook, holds an "open compute program" server from the racks at Facebook's headquarters in Palo Alto, CA. Photograph by Norbert Von Der Groeben/Landov  

Facebook has made waves by detailing its plans to use what an executive calls “cell phone chips”—or “wimpy cores”—in its future data centers. Frank Frankovsky, the vice president in charge of infrastructure at Facebook, told me the social network plans to test such chips now and throughout next year, with plans to put them into production in 2014.

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