In Sunday night's episode of HBO's "Silicon Valley," the fictional start-up Pied Piper is shown using some high tech data center hardware that enables it to compete with the Google-inspired Internet giant Hooli.
One piece of machinery shown at the Pied Piper hacker house was from a real life Silicon Valley company named Pure Storage, which develops high speed flash storage arrays to take on legacy storage vendors like EMC and NetApp.
Pure is by no means a fledgling start-up. The Mountain View, California-based company was valued at over $3 billion a year ago in a $225 million financing round that included investing heavyweights T. Rowe Price and Tiger Global.
Still, Pure lacks mainstream name recognition, so having its logo show up on 1.7 million or so TV sets is an efficient way to get some free marketing. (Tweet This) But it was a subtle appearance, recognizable only to those in the know.
The scene doesn't include Pure's name, and the box is noticeable for the company's orange open hexagon logo that from an angle resembles a P.
Pied Piper was able to afford the equipment ($70,000 worth) because three episodes prior, it backed out on fancy new office space at the last minute to instead spend its last few venture dollars on setting up its own data center in the garage of the hacker house.
Importantly for Pure, the show illustrates how a complicated box that sits in the guts of the data center can be easily set up by a single coder.
"Our founder's 8-year-old son can set it up," said Amy Cronk, director of communications at Pure. "The owner's manual is the size of two business cards."