Will 2013 be the year we start to see traditional data centers whither away? With the rise of ever-more dense processors, cloud computing and continuing consolidation, it's very likely that data centers will start visibly shrinking and reshaping in the year ahead.

1) Big data, smaller processors: IT author and Notre Dame professor Brian Profitt, for one, sees 2013 as a watershed year for data centers. In a recent article at ReadWriteEnterprise, he says big-data software and lower-cost, ARM-based systems-on-chips are making large traditional data centers unnecessary.

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