Schwartz also talked at great length about what Sun is becoming, giving the example of his niece, who, along with her friends, sees the Java logo on their phones and thinks Sun means "my game is about to start." But then there is the high-performance computing community who knows Sun for Lustre. There is Sun, the company helping Fortune 1000 companies build data centers, and Sun, the company who allegedly will announce tomorrow that it will partner with Amazon on a cloud computing initiative.
Who is Sun? Depends on the community you ask. Here, Schwartz received a very warm applause, and tons of questions picking away at what it's going to do in cloud. And Schwartz made no bones about its support of startups. It knows it needs to give something away now for a payoff down the road. Small companies become big, Web startups need computing power in their own data centers or in the cloud, and if Sun can support them now the company has a greater likelihood of getting them as a customer later.
When asked how he feels about having to lay off up to 2,500 people, Schwartz said it was the toughest part of his job. Perhaps an understatement for most of us, but his inquisitor, Om Malik, claimed to be a capitalist and took this as just another part of running a business. Schwartz retorted, saying "we are a company whose assets go home every night .... I don't think that's how you build lasting cultures. I think it's how you build sweatshops."