Strategy for prevention needed - Rackspace could up the game.
You've all mentioned how Rackspace needs to secure it's backup electrical facilities, but this incident highlights their need to follow the less traveled path of investing in the improvement of their primary commodity.
In much the same way that Rackspace might build a bleeding edge facility, the company (and it's like) should blaze the path for alternative energy sources. I don't mean backup alone, but as a primary power source, using bleeding edge power generation technology.
Find another company that is on this patj, invest in them, and reap the rewards for using their breakthrough method. Renewable energy issues aside, the purpose is to further reduce dependencies.
Sure, they likely receive kickbacks from their home town headquarters for using the local power stations and contributing to town treasury. But not-spending is the best way to save money - not paying discounts - and that means higher revenues (further enhancements, etc).
The larger benefit (the one I'm most interested in) is that of the alternative energy industry. When big companies risk-and-research (invest in burgeoning industries) it can quickly trickle down to city governments and individual households.
If I wanted to reassure customers, I'd announce investments/partnerships with an alternate energy outfit, pointing to a goal to be a umpteen-percent less dependent on local power.
The best competitive advantage is when you're the only player. Rackspace should see this opportunity to do more than fix it, and prevent it.