Update: CBS San Francisco reckons it’s actually going to be a floating Glass showroom:
There has, of course, been speculation about the barge’s purpose, much of it centering on the belief that it’s a water-based data center for Google.
KPIX 5 has learned that Google is actually building a floating marketing center, a kind of giant Apple store, if you will — but for Google Glass, the cutting-edge wearable computer the company has under development.
Although Google wouldn’t respond to requests for comment for this story, sources close to the project told KPIX 5 that Google hopes to tow the completed structure from Treasure Island across the Bay to San Francisco’s Fort Mason, where it would be anchored and open to the public.
It looks big for a store, but it could make sense as Google’s first full retail presence.
According to a new report from Cnet, something big is currently under construction in San Francisco Bay and evidence shows that it could possibly be a new Google project. The four story floating structure hasn’t been officially linked to Google, but Cnet has discovered some evidence that Google could be working on a secret data center related project in the building.
Perhaps more persuasive is that in 2009, Google was granted a patent for a “water-based data center,” defined as a “system [that] includes a floating platform-mounted computer data center comprising a plurality of computing units, a sea-based electrical generator in electrical connection with the plurality of computing units, and one or more sea-water cooling units for providing cooling to the…computing units.”
The patent, however, isn’t the only evidence linking Google to the project. Cnet also notes that the contact for the company that is leasing the location has ties to Google:
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Saez said that a man named Tim Brandon was the point of contact for By and Large, and provided a phone number. Punch in the digits provided by Saez and you’ll hear, “Thank you for calling Google. The number you dialed is no longer in service.” In addition, Brandon’s LinkedIn profile identified his current position as “Senior Transaction Manager, CBRE @ Google” and his top responsibility as “Lead and manage all acquisition and disposition activity for Google’s Silicon Valley portfolio.”
While it’s far from solid proof, the Cnet reports adds that locals have heard whispers that Google is indeed behind the project.