Sunday, December 13, 2009

How Much Information...

"The average American consumes 34 gigabytes of content and 100,000 words of information in a single day (excluding work information) -- 11.8 hours of information -- according to a report by the University of California, San Diego.

U.S. information consumption in 2008 totaled 3.6
zettabytes (10^21 bytes) and 10,845 trillion words."

What's rather interesting about this research is determining just how much this information weighs, a project BRT did for fun back in July, 2007 in a post titled A Dangerous Thing. In the piece, the estimated data produced by us would increase from 161 Exabites in 2007 to 988 in 2010 as per Baseline's Proforma, which equates, according to Discover Magazine's formula, to the size of a large pebble. Looking at Kurzweilai.net's findings, it looks like Baseline's forecast was off by about 3.6 times as a zettabyte is equivalent to 1000 Exabites, thus increasing the size and weight of data generated to that of a large marble. To get more info about data overload, click here.

Note: This info covers only the US so the earth's entire data set might equate to the size of a small rock.


As seen by this factoid, it's rather obvious that predicting the future is impossible thanks to chaos, the law of initial conditions and quantum theory. To see BRT's take on this last statement, click here . If nothing else, you will learn about the Mayans and the myth of 2012. Enjoy. :)

Addendum: Check out this amazing paper titled Time & Space Time: The Crystallizing Block Universe by George F. R. Ellis & Tony Rothman as it explains, in elegant fashion, why prognostications about the future is a fool's game at best.
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