When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson

14 March 2008

Information overload: it's official

We’ve hit information overload: The amount of data people create now exceeds the amount of space available to store them.

People sent emails, took digital pictures, processed credit cards and generally did things that collectively created 281 exabytes of data by the end 2007, according to the research company IDC. (“Exabyte” sounds made up, but it’s a real term meaning 1,000,000,000,000 megabytes.) IDC also added up all the computer drives, backup tapes, CDs, DVDs, memory sticks and other devices that store data and estimated that their total capacity is only 264 exabtyes.

There aren’t data just drifting in the ether somewhere. A lot of the data that get created—say, an Internet phone call–never get stored. Other data get erased or recorded over. It’s the digital equivalent of a conversation going in one ear and out the other. But for the first time in human history, we couldn’t save all this information if we wanted to, according to IDC.

It's Official: There's Too Much Information (Wall Street Journal Business Technology Blog)

No comments: