Numbers, to the extent they convey information, can be fascinating. Prior to the introduction of Doxserá DB 4.0, we had never heard the term “zettabyte” and had no clue as to its meaning or the magnitude it describes. Until then, the largest numbers in our experience were those used to describe federal spending, trillions.
A zettabyte is defined as one billion trillion, a huge number. Take a trillion, which is already 1,000 times a billion, then multiply that enormous number by an additional billion, a computation beyond comprehension.
1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 or 1021 is roughly 250 million times as big as the entire federal budget for 2017. Data transfer of a single zettabyte is roughly equivalent to delivering to every person on earth 87 newspapers every day.
According to Bernard Marr in Forbes, we can estimate that the world is currently storing more than 20 ZB of data, and can expect that to more than double to 44ZB in just three years.
But why bother? Is the effort just a waste of resources?