EMC looks to be single-handedly reinventing the industry. And creating a new one as well.

They just topped Fortune’s list of most admired computer peripherals companies, beating out NetApp.

They bought Pi Corporation, snagging Paul Maritz, longtime Microsoftie, and put him in charge of a new division focused on cloud computing.

And the soon-to-be-announced Hulk/Maui project will further roil the waters of a complacent industry. Unlike their usual secrecy about futures, EMC can’t shut up about Maui. That reflects a confidence that they’ve got something that can’t easily be replicated.

Note to erstwhile competitors: be afraid – be very afraid. The last time EMC was this fired up they rolled IBM out of their decades-old enterprise storage domination. And now they are a $12 billion company. There will be a lot of collateral damage.

Eat lunch or be lunch
18 months ago I was writing CEO Joe Tucci off, but I was wrong. He’s brought in a lot of new blood with a mandate to create change. EMC is hungry.

The StorageMojo take
EMC’s famously fractious product groups don’t like the emerging order. EMC isn’t going to be an array-centric company much longer. That is hard for the Sym and Clariion groups. Especially when their margin dollars are going to support new ventures that won’t all be successful.

EMC will continue selling arrays, though they won’t be core to the company’s message. They’ll be a stepping stone to more compelling services and products geared to global enterprises. Software that ties EMC arrays, virtual machines and the new cloud infrastructure products together will freeze out point products.

Those planning to continue with “faster, better, cheaper” competitive strategies will have to adjust. Starting now would be wise.

Comments welcome, as always.