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mattbrowne's avatar

How large do you expect the total information storage of human civilization to be in the year 2030?

Asked by mattbrowne (31648points) March 10th, 2011

The current total information storage of human civilization is about 295 exabytes which is 295,000 petabytes or 295,000,000 terabytes.

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2380134,00.asp

What will happen when 3D movies based on a 4992×3328 resolution become widespread?

The SI prefixes are mega, giga, tera, peta, exa, zetta, yotta, xona, weka, vunda, uda, treda, sorta, rinta, quexa, pepta, ocha, nena, minga, and luma. And granted, most of them sound sorta minga lumatic. Will we need them at some point?

Just one example: the combined stellar power of our universe is about 100 rintawatts.

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7 Answers

BarnacleBill's avatar

Mindboggling. Digital hoarding comes to mind. Perhaps we need an intervention?

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

According to the Bekenstein Bound, there is a limit to the information that can be stored in a given volume. Since size limitations will always exist, I would expect the total information storage to asymptote, although I don’t have enough information to predict the value that we will asymptote to.

meiosis's avatar

Where have you got your information on SI prefixes from? As far as I was aware, at present they only go up to Yotta.

mattbrowne's avatar

As far as I know according to the Bekenstein Bound, one hydrogen atom can potentially store a million bits. There are about 10^79 hydrogen atoms in the observable universe, which means all available hydrogen could be used to store 10^85 bits or 10^82 bytes.

Well, 10^82 bytes equals

100,000,000,000,000,000,000 lumabytes.

So, why the heck do SI prefixes only go up to yotta? Even the luma prefix is awkward when we someone turns part of the universe into a giant computer.

Cruiser's avatar

Holoprocessors could virtually eliminate storage concerns and do computations at mind boggling rates and just might render Moore’s Law obsolete.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@mattbrowne Thanks for that, I did not know the quantities involved. However I don’t think information storage will ever take up any volume greater than today’s server rooms – we will just jam more information into the same volume.

talljasperman's avatar

A Google-byte…or if the world economy falls apart then 0 bytes… Or their will only be one copy of each 3-d movie from strict storage laws and one back up for all of humanity.

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