Cover story in the latest issue of Forbes -- a timely snapshot of Cisco.
This is what the online computing revolution has become, a giant electricity hog of Internet searches, phone calls, blog posts, wireless downloads, bank transactions and office documents. And video, lots and lots of video. Every week Google (nasdaq: GOOG - news - people )'s YouTube adds 57,000 clips to its library. Cisco's own WebEx service, designed for videoconferencing in the office, hosts up to 7 million minutes a month. The giants of the Internet--Microsoft (nasdaq: MSFT - news - people ), Google, Yahoo (nasdaq: YHOO - news - people ), Amazon--plus fast-moving Chinese upstarts like Baidu and TenCent, are building more of these giant centers. Microsoft figures it will expand its network of data centers 64-fold over the next few years, just to handle some 200 services, including Xbox online gaming, video and corporate software rented over the Web. Microsoft has scenarios of trucks loaded with thousands of servers pulling up to feed its data centers as needed, straight into a Cisco switch.
Some charts from later in the article:
Cash on hand: