Google is now offering a small virtual hard drive in the cloud so you can access all sorts of files anywhere — the latest salvo in an arms race to become the dominant player in cloud services.
This business is suddenly becoming viable with the ubiquity of broadband connectivity (which makes things almost as accessible as they’d be on your hard drive) and the popularity of netbooks (which are usually light on internal storage). For now, Google is portraying the initiative less dramatically, as a USB key rather than as a hard-drive replacement.
Instead of e-mailing files to yourself, which is particularly difficult with large files, you can upload to Google Docs any file up to 250 MB….
But perhaps this is just a beginning of the famed Google Drive, a full-on hard drive in the sky. Although it is definitely a red Robin, Nextbit is using Ember as a fancier way to describe the appearance of this special model. The Nextbit Robin is currently available in Ember, Mint, and Midnight through the company’s site for $299.
Born and raised in New Jersey, Justin is a graduate of Fairleigh Dickinson University where he studied marketing with a focus on digital marketing.
By now, many readers will be aware that the Perodua is about to launch its first sedan model as two pictures and also a leaflet have been leaked on the internet. The idea of a sedan model has been circulating within the company for some time and back in 2010, at the KL International Motorshow (KLIMS), a sleek prototype was displayed which Perodua said indicated its future direction although technically, that prototype had extremely advanced technology like a ‘Precious Metal-free Liquid-feed Fuel Cell’. Fuelling the rumours was a cleverly photoshopped creation by Theophilus Chin which alarmed even Perodua’s management and made them wonder if their R&D people had been proceeding with the project without their knowledge!
As we now know, the company has chosen to use ‘Bezza’ and while the design is not as futuristic as the Bezza prototype of 2010, it is better looking than the chunky Buddyz concept. With the Bezza, Perodua has done almost exactly the same thing as Proton did with the Waja.
And just as Proton designed the body of the Waja itself, the same has been done by Perodua for the Bezza because Daihatsu does not have such a model at all.
Anyway, let’s now move on to the Bezza which is likely to take its place at the top of the sales chart.
In shaping the Bezza’s body, the Perodua designers had to work within the constraints of the Axia platform which is fairly compact. The designers have done a pretty good job of creating a 3-box sedan from the hatchback and it does not look like all they did was just add a boot to the back.
Many people may see this as a ‘Saga-killer’ although Perodua doesn’t even think of that at all. The body structure follows current industry trends with increased use of high tensile steel which makes the body more rigid but without a weight penalty. Interior spaciousness or what is known as ‘packaging’ is a big challenge with such a compact model. The major difference from the Axia is the amount of boot space and with a boot floor length of 1030 mm, the volume available with the rear backrests up is 508 litres – almost double that of the hatchback. For those who need more space, the rear backrests can fold down individually (60:40 split) or together.
Moving on to the dashboard, although the hardware and structure behind it are probably similar to the Axia, the Bezza has an entirely different design which has a more horizontal theme to create a sense of extra width. And it’s not just high quality that Perodua offers too – with the Bezza, they have a real game-changer as many of the features they offer are not just firsts for Perodua but also in the segment (in Malaysia at least). Rear passengers can also get power for their devices as there is a USB port for them at the back. There are also all the other conveniences which are provided in other Perodua models including the special lock (called a ‘side snap hook’) to secure handbags. Where the Axia is available only with a 1-litre 3-cylinder engine, the Bezza has an additional and larger 1.3-litre unit as well.
Another high-end technology in the Bezza is Regenerative Braking which was initially only found in hybrid cars. All these technologies, along with the efficient electronically-managed automatic transmission (E-AT), enable the Bezza to qualify as an Energy Efficient Vehicle (EEV) according to criteria set by the current National Automotive Policy (NAP). Apparently, Perodua has is confident that the Bezza will be tops in safety and by this, they must mean that it will get at least 5 stars in the ASEAN NCAP crash test. In accordance with legal requirements, there are two front airbags and ISOFIX point for a compatible childseat. This variant doesn’t have a pushbutton so the key had to be inserted and turned – which is how Perodua engines have been started all along anyway. The engine in the Axia felt rougher but the one in the Bezza shakes less and I would attribute this to not just mounting points and construction but also the better combustion due to the VVT-i.
There were two others on board the car as I accelerated off and on flat ground, it moved briskly off the line. The new test course has sections that replicate the hilly terrain of Malaysia and though the Bezza zoomed up the incline effortlessly, a slight diminishing of speed reminded me that it is just a 1-litre engine.
The 4-cylinder engine can be taken all the way to the 6000 rpm redline and does not protest, and in between, there’s a lot of flexibility so the transmission does not keep changing a lot. Unlike the 1-litre variant, the Bezza 1.3 pretty much raced up the same slope and with the high speeds, I also assessed the handling of the car. If there is anything I would like improved, it is probably the steering feel which was on the light side.
If you are realistic about your expectations, the Bezza 1.0 is fine for those who are on a tight budget. To quickly recap, for what felt like a millennium, the raised access floor ruled the data center world with nary a challenger. The majority of server farms are still constructed with a raised floor as part of the plans. When things are hidden down there, it may be difficult to ever find them, and hiding “stuff” down there makes it hard to find things you’re actually looking for.
The final, and perhaps most important, reason why many DCs are moving away from raised floors and towards slab ones is power.
We’re likely to continue seeing more and more new centers choose slab floors for all of the reasons listed above.
Every DC is unique, and raised floors still make sense for some, so don’t expect them to completely disappear from the data center world overnight. That move heightens their competition with Microsoft, and takes on Apple and a number of small startups in the business of creating backup and storage space on remote servers.
Cloud computing also makes it possible never to lose data when you drop your beloved laptop, or when you don’t have it with you. Apple’s Mobile Me (once known as iDisk) has a 20-GB floor for $100 a year and a family plan in keeping with their mainly consumer focus.
This makes it easy to back up more of your key files online, from large graphics and raw photos to unedited home videos taken on your smartphone. By contrast, Gmail now offers more than 7 GB of storage for e-mails and attachments, while Google’s Picasa lets you store 10 GB of photos. Select retailers including Amazon and Flipkart are selling the phone for that price, but only Nextbit is carrying the Ember color option. He's very talkative and enjoys discussing anything from technology and sports to video games and television.

It’s a long awaited model from the country’s No.1 carmaker which has been producing hatchbacks and compact MPVs (and one compact SUV) since it began operations in 1993.
Then at the 2013 KLIMS, a more ‘production-friendly’ concept car called the ‘Buddyz’ was displayed and it seemed like Perodua would soon launch a sedan. The fictitious model even had a name – Jaguh – and it was so convincing that the company had to clarify that it had no such model under development.
This is more than just another new Perodua model as it has numerous firsts; more significantly, it is a major advancement in the company’s capabilities and comparable to Proton’s development of the Waja which its CEO declared had made the company a ‘world-class’ car manufacturer.
It has adapted a Daihatsu platform (the same as the one used for the Axia) and is using engines developed by Daihatsu.
Those who still want to dismiss Perodua as a ‘rebadging company’ may then say that Japanese must have done the design but the truth is that this model has even greater Malaysian involvement than the Myvi. Well, ‘little brother’ seems to have been a diligent pupil and studied hard to excel but even after outshining ‘big brother’, it has not become arrogant and boastful about its achievements. Historically, Malaysians have preferred the traditional 3-box sedan design but the best-selling model for many years has been the Myvi, a hatchback. Apart from the sedan being more commonplace than the hatchback, some say that the presence of the boot gives a greater sense of security (additional crumple zone at the back during an accident). Things like the overall body width and length had to be such that they could fit properly on top of the platform. With some European hatchbacks, the sedan variant often looks like a half-hearted effort and the result is not aesthetically pleasing. But it is inevitable that comparisons will be made and for those who want to know, the dimensions are smaller than the Saga… although not by a lot.
This has been achieved by putting covers on the underside so the airflow below the car is smoother. Official data shows that the distance between front and rear occupants is the same as the Axia but what is interesting to note is that this distance is actually greater than many models one class higher. You’d think that in such matters, the designers would just do what they can and leave it at that but we were told that Perodua conducted surveys on user requirements and feedback indicated that 75% of Malaysians would be satisfied with 500 litres. But while the layout looks a bit ‘messy’, the fit and finish even in the pre-production units viewed were still of a high standard. This is certainly something which many will welcome – no need to use a powerbank or run a cable from the front.
One thing which the designers haven’t been able to improve has been the cupholders at the front.
The 1-litre unit is not exactly the same one as it has variable valve timing (VVT-i) on the intake side and it produces 68 ps, which is about 2 ps more than the engine in the Axia which does not have VVT-i. It was only introduced in the region last year on Daihatsu and Toyota models and it is manufactured at Perodua’s new plant in Sendayan, Negri Sembilan. The system, usually provided in more expensive models and a first in a Malaysian car, automatically shuts down the engine when the car is stopped for long periods, eg at traffic lights. This system draws the energy that is normally ‘lost’ during braking and deceleration and uses it to recharge the battery and keep it fully charged. This means that Perodua can get incentives which help it to offset its production cost to sell the car at a lower price. However, the maximum score would only apply to the Bezza 1.3 Advance which is the only variant having Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and Traction Control. Additionally, Perodua provides a seatbelt reminder and there is ABS with EBD (Electronic Brakeforce Distribution). Motor Trader was offered an opportunity to get brief driving impressions on Perodua’s new test course a few weeks ago and although the time was limited, it was enough to get an idea of the performance that can be expected. So the first variant I chose to drive was the Bezza 1.0 with a manual transmission which I expect would be the cheapest one. The accompanying sound was as expected from a 3-cylinder engine – what I usually call a ‘motorboat’ sound. The engine revs freely and though the upward shifting was easy, I kept finding some resistance going into 3rd gear.
This is not to say that it ‘doesn’t have enough power’; in the early years of the Kancil, people often thought it can’t go up Genting Highlands but any car can do it. With this bigger engine, the performance was much better and I would say it is ideal for the car. Electronic management helps to make the transitions between gears smoother as the computer times the change precisely and coordinates it with the engine output too. Being tall and narrow, it would seem that the car will not feel so stable but it sat well on the road at high speeds and in turns, it did not roll much.
There is still the physical action of turning the starter motor and that makes noise and can sometimes be rough. Maybe this will convince you: the Uptime Institute last year found that only around 48 percent of companies were planning to build centers with raised floors. Everyone wants to save money wherever they can in business, and the data industry is particularly obsessed with running the most efficient operations possible.
What happens if there’s a security threat like an access point or a moisture leak or wall breach below the floor someplace?
Forcing cold air down under a faux floor and guiding it back up to cool off equipment takes a ton of power. Running greener and more efficiently is a great thing, but it unfortunately isn’t always practical for all DCs. However, there are still a large minority of centers being built with raised access floors.
You might even be able to replace the USB drive you reserved for those files that are too big to send over e-mail. So, add us to your ad blocker’s whitelist or pay $1 per week for an ad-free version of WIRED.
Sometimes companies lie (and even ask the police to take action) because they still want to maintain secrecy but in this instance, Perodua was telling the truth. Critics may argue that Perodua is just ‘cloning’ products – taking Daihatsu models and making a few changes here and there but with no real in-house capability.
Though denied in earlier years, Proton had actually adapted the platform of the Mitsubishi Carisma and initially used Mitsubishi and Renault engines for the Waja.
It has been entirely designed by Malaysians and although there are some Japanese present in the design department, they are more for coordination on certain matters with Daihatsu. This is probably because Perodua has not had a sedan in its line-up and so people had no choice if they preferred a Perodua. Others have said that the sealed boot is preferred because it will keep durian smells from getting into the cabin! The width and wheelbase, in particular, can’t be varied but the overall length can and the Bezza is 510 mm longer than the Axia. Not so with the Bezza which has well-balanced proportion and a nice frontal presentation which gives a visual impression of more width than the Axia.
There are also little features like air-spats under the front bumper and stabilizing fins at the door mirrors and rear lights to improve aerodynamic efficiency.
The spaciousness has been achieved by clever design of the seat structures and especially for the rear passengers, the seats are designed to offer better comfort and support.

And for an extra-long item like a carpet, you can also fold down the front passenger’s seat flat (have to take out the headrest) so there is a flat space all the way to the dashboard. It is commendable that in spite of having to sell its cars at low prices, it can still give such quality. This means that you can watch videos (only when the car is not moving), use apps like Waze and Google Maps, access Facebook and other social media, listen to your own music selection and of course, make and receive phone calls. Due to space limitations, the two circular receptacles are merged and because they are so close, two large tapered cups may not fit in properly (cans are fine). The NR-VE engine is more advanced than the one in the Myvi as it has Dual VVT-i, which means the opening and closing of the valves can be optimised for the exhaust side as well. It’s very useful because a running engine with the car not moving is a tremendous waste of fuel; the Perodua engineers say that the system can help you get up to one more km for each litre.
By using this approach, the alternator does not need to be used so much and as the alternator is driven by the engine, less use means less load on the engine. We don’t know what the price range is at this time and won’t know till the launch but from the way the Perodua people keep smiling when asked, we may be in for a pleasant surprise. ASEAN NCAP (and also EuroNCAP) will not give maximum star ratings if a model does not have VSC, not matter how well it does in the crash test.
That’s not all – there’s also Hillstart Assist which makes moving off on a slope easier and the windscreen wiper speed is matched to the speed of the car (the faster the speed, the faster the wiper sweeps).
It’s sometimes irritates me but I know it is unavoidable and as with the Axia, I urged the engineers to try to mask the sound by putting more insulation in. I’m not sure if it was the particular unit but it was noticeable; with manual transmissions, the operation is usually smooth to the point that there’s nothing to comment on. The problem with many drivers is that they want to do it in top gear and so the car struggles on steep slopes. In more extreme manoeuvres like a slalom course, the car tracked very well and was very controllable as it swung left and right. However, the challenge is to balance the amount of assistance between high and low speeds and different drivers will have different expectations. It’s not like in hybrids which operate with no sound or movement as they start off with the electric motor. Right now it’s estimated that 90 percent of centers are making use of raised access floors, but that number could be cut in half one day soon if Uptime’s numbers are to be believed.
As mentioned, one of the old benefits of raising the floor was the improved cooling efficiency that allowed managers to move away from freezing entire centers and instead get the cold air only where it needed to be. The simple reality is that bolting down racks to concrete is a heck of a lot cheaper than constructing a raised access floor for them to sit on. Operators are going to have a heck of a time trying to find it, that’s what – especially if a bunch of junk is being stored down there.
The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Conde Nast. In the rare case that his phone or tablet is not in his hand, he is either flicking through cards on his Moto 360 (2015) or typing away on the Microsoft Surface Book. There was no ‘Jaguh’ sedan but they did not deny that they were ‘looking at the possibility of producing a sedan’. Unfortunately, because much of the R&D activity is kept secret (like any other manufacturer), the public has never been able to know how much progress Perodua has really made in developing in-house capabilities and they are considerable. It’ll be interesting to see if the Bezza sells better than the Myvi eventually, confirming that Malaysians still like the 3-box design. The perception that a hatchback is not as spacious as a sedan no longer holds true with today’s models and the Honda Jazz clearly demonstrates this. In other countries, cars at this end of the market are usually quite basic and quality is not a priority.
This is timely since the authorities are getting more serious about use of the handphone while driving and say that even holding it when waiting at a traffic light is an offence. But what this really means is that the level of protection is the same with all variants, except that Active Safety is different due to the absence of VSC in the other variants.
They told me that they have lowered cabin noise levels but their focus was more on other sources of noise. So engineers usually wait till the car is on the market some time and listen to feedback and then fine-tune the steering feel. Fortunately, the sound of the starter motor isn’t very loud otherwise motorists in cars next to you will wonder if you are a terrible driver and keep stalling the engine! Either way, as we examined last week, you’ll want to turn your eyes downward at some point in the decision-making process. It was a great solution for a great long while, but some of today’s hardware is as high density as 8-10 kilowatts (or more) per rack. Of course, not using a raised floor means you’re probably going to have to run overhead cables and cooling ducts, which has its own expenses.
Cleaning below a raised access floor is an extreme headache, which means it’s often filthy dirty in the area beneath raised floors, which is not exactly an attractive attribute of a place that’s going to be housing tons of expensive hardware that stores an incredible amount of important data. Alternatively, putting the cooling system up in the ceiling and allowing cold air to naturally fall down the way physics intended it to makes for huge power savings. Raised floors may also be the ideal solution for DCs in which racks need to be routinely rearranged.
Despite putting videos in the cloud, their thumbnails will still show in your gallery for quick access. Justin is patiently waiting for the day that Google replicates the Galaxy Nexus with modern day specifications. One downside with the new engine – it requires an extra litre of engine oil (4 litres instead of 3 litres) which will add a little to maintenance cost but since you will save on petrol, this increase is probably offset anyway. There are also anti-intrusion beams in the doors to give better protection during side impacts and a beam across the back of the rear seats to prevent luggage from shooting forward and causing injuries in the event of a severe collision. That means massive amounts of cooling are needed, and obstructions like cabling beneath the floor can hold back a center’s ability to properly cool its racks.
Additionally, raised spare parts and junk tend to get stashed under the tiles as time goes on. If a center grows at an unexpected exponential rate, and they sometimes do, then safely deploying more hardware on top of a floor that wasn’t designed for it can lead to big problems.
Cooling down hardware is one of the largest power drains on DCs, and doing it from above instead of from below greatly reduces the need to use massive amounts of fan power to make it happen.
Nobody really wants to do it, and everybody thinks they’re going to be better than that when they’re building their facility, but most fall prey to stashing things out of sight and out of mind as the years go by in a work environment in which free time for finding a better storage solution is at a premium. It’s also possible that a center will start using equipment from different manufacturers or some future technological direction of servers will lead to them weighing more than those originally planned for a center.
If you read the first part of this blog that we posted on Friday, then you know there are two basic options when it comes to flooring: slab or raised access.

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