Every single day brings us new technology advances. This one is about disk storage. Seagate, the hard-drive vendor, just said that storage densities a thousand times higher than densities available today would be available in the next five to ten years.
Hard-drive maker Seagate said it has overcome a significant challenge in magnetic memory with a new technology capable of achieving far beyond today's storage densities -- up to as great as 50 terabits per square inch. Currently, the highest storage densities hover around 50 gigabits per square inch, but Seagate said its heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR) could break through the so-called superparamagnetic limit -- a memory boundary based on data bits so small they become magnetically unstable.
By heating the memory medium with a laser-generated beam at the precise spot where data bits are being recorded, HAMR dramatically increases density -- and substantially improves the outlook for magnetic recording, according to Seagate.
Now, let's come to one of my all-time favorite comparisons.
While the technology was originally expected to accommodate one terabit of data per square inch -- which Paulsen called "extremely high compared to today's standards," Seagate researchers now believe they can store as much as 50 terabits per square inch -- equivalent to the entire printed contents of the Library of Congress -- on a single disk drive for a notebook computer.
If I got one dollar -- or one euro -- for every article or press release mentioning the Library of Congress, I certainly would not be rich, but I'm sure I could travel around the world for free.
I don't know if Seagate's claims are real. You can also check their press release here.
Anyway, having 20 terabytes of disk space on my laptop sure sounds like a good idea. But what about bandwidth or data access time? Imagine a backup of such a humongous disk at today's speeds? It would take months.
Source: Jay Lyman, NewsFactor Network, August 28, 2002