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Forecast of Worldwide Information Growth

The Diverse and Exploding Digital Universe: An Updated Forecast of Worldwide Information Growth Through 2011, An IDC White Paper – sponsored by EMC, John F. Gantz, Project Director, March 2008.

This report estimates the dimensions of the digital information explosion. With figures like 281 billion gigabytes (the size of the “digital universe” in 2007, which is a million times the amount of digital data hosted by the Library of Congress in 2008 — see Berman, Francine. Got data?: a guide to data preservation in the information age. Commun. ACM 51, no. 12 (2008): 50-56) and estimates like “By 2011, the digital universe will be 10 times the size it was in 2006” the report has sobering implications for digital preservation. In fact, it notes that:

As forecast, the amount of information created, captured, or replicated exceeded available storage for the first time in 2007. Not all information created and transmitted gets stored, but by 2011, almost half of the digital universe will not have a permanent home.

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