While I've taken a somewhat cynical approach to discussions of modular datacenters in the past, I find that the concept of micro-modular datacenters is one that merits an open minded approach. While the traditional or even the containerized approach to datacenters is suitable for large scale environments and long term deployments, the concept of the micro-modular datacenter lends itself to a wide range of special purpose and small-scale projects.
This niche market, which at the bottom line consists of self-contained rack systems that are completely enclosed and offer a plug and play datacenter environment which can be defined as "add the standard rack mount equipment of choice, close the door, connect the network and power and you are good to go" seems to have been defined by the company Elliptical Mobile Solutions. My attention was drawn to the market by their recent announcement of a ruggedized module designed for deployment in virtually any environment where power can be delivered.
Off-road capable, self-contained, and self-propelled, are not marketing terms off associated with datacenters, but there is no reason they shouldn't be. Beyond military applications IT people responsible for disaster planning, for IT deployments in organizations that routinely need to be in unprepared or outdoor environments, or for temporary job site deployments, the entire concept of a datacenter not in a shipping container, but in a device more like a large, secure filing cabinet, can hold a lot of appeal.
Granted, this is a very specific point product and not a general purpose solution, but it certainly addresses the specific needs of this niche market. Modular and container solutions are, fopr the most part, not this narrowly targeted, which is both the strength and the weakness of that market. But for this very narrowly defined product, the underlying concept of the EMS micro-modular datacenter is a good one.