The Terror of Bytes

(Not too) many years ago I handed over £99.99 for an enormous 50 megabyte hard drive. Upon installing it in a PC running Windows 3.10 I possessed a vast storage system that rivaled many servers of the time. I was Lord of Diskspace.

So it was with some interest that I munched the ham this morning that announced a One Terabyte hard drive for the same £99.99.

If we stick to decimal definitions of mega- and tera- bytes, that means my £99.99 now buys 20,000!! of those humongous 50MB disks. I now need a new definition of humongous.

Having said all of that, storage needs have increased in similar proportion. I frequently work on digital images that exceed 50MB in size. In 2007 I shot over 12,000 digital images, all of which were greater than 8MB in size (96GB in the year). However that requirement pales into insignificance compared to the data that will be produced by the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, shortly to enter service, which will produce 15 Petabytes of data each year, (requiring 15,000 of those new terabyte hard drives) assuming it doesn’t create a black hole that eats the earth first.

~ by @mmonyte on April 15, 2008.

4 Responses to “The Terror of Bytes”

  1. Just think what we could accomplish with a personal computer boasting a terabyte of RAM … makes me giddy just thinking about it.

  2. You’ll find out in about five years’ time.

    waiting for comment along the lines of “64K is all you need, I remember when I wrote an MRPG that only needed 32K…..”
    /end pause

  3. Its amazing. Old people like us remember what it was like to deal with real computers – not these fancy new ones. Why when I was a child… we had cardboard box computers! We’d have to walk 15 miles in the snow barefoot to even look apon it. Then, we’d have to pay for the priveledge!

  4. What! You had a cardboard box computer? Luxury! I had to make do with an abacus made out of gravel, we lived in a hole in the road, got up at midnight to go to school …………

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