Adam Gartenberg's Blog

Business Analytics and Optimization, IBM and Social Marketing

How big is a Yottabyte? (Sorry R. Island and Delaware)

If you've seen a presentation from us recently, chances are you're familiar with the phrase "an explosion of information."  Online backup firm Backblaze has shared an infographic that puts this in rather stark perspective.  

Apparently the United States National Security Agency recently speculated that by the year 2015 they may need Yottabytes of storage to maintain all of the surveillance data they are collecting.  (The CrunchGear post that originated this has since been updated to point out that hundreds of Petabytes is the more likely need, with a Yottabyte being only an outside possibility.)  

Regardless, since it's hard to put 1,000,000,000,000,000 GB in perspective, I found the infographic quite illuminating.  (My favorite part is where they speculate that it would cost 5x the US GDP to acquire and maintain this, although my guess is the NSA doesn't pay retail.)

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