The importance of innovative infrastructure at Google can't be over-emphasized. If you want to understand how Brin, Page and the top Googlers think, just say to yourself: Is there a way I can radically over-haul how infrastructure works?
Obviously, they've have done this for their computing power. And that worked so incredibly successfully in the following areas:
Do you think Google bought some package for SarBox compliance? Of course not! They've rolled their own by repurposing their source-code control system for that. Brin and Page are the kings of "rolling their own". That's what they do.
Now let's role-play. Put yourself in Brin & Page's shoes:
You want to minimize the housing / commuting problems for your talent. Do you:
It's also why they'd buy a 767 instead of a Gulfstream for the corporate jet. You'll know when Google is in trouble when they starting buying off-the-shelf stuff.