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You Want Data?

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The Economist reports that

    AROUND five exabytes (5 billion gigabytes) of information was created in 2002, up from around two exabytes in 1999, according to the latest “How Much Information?” survey produced by the School of Information Management and Systems at the University of California in Berkeley. This is equivalent to half a million libraries the size of America’s Library of Congress, or about 800 megabytes per person per year.

    Almost all new information (92%) is stored on magnetic media, primarily hard disks.

    ….Overall, the amount of information being produced is growing by 30% a year. America is the single largest producer, producing around half of the new information on magnetic and optical media, and a third of the paper-based and film-based information.

    The researchers, led by Peter Lyman and Hal Varian, also estimated the volume of information flows through electronic channels, such as telephone calls, radio and television transmissions, and internet traffic. They came up with a total of 18 exabytes, of which phone calls accounted for 98%.

People blab a lot and produce a lot of information. I wonder how much of it is ever read by more than the person who created it.

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About Eric Olsen

  • Ray

    Well, five exabytes of information was created, but I don’t think the cited article, or the commentary, or this post, or these books, are part of that total…

  • Eric Olsen

    good point, that was for ’02.