Yottabyte: 1024 zettabytes, or 1,048,576 exabytes.
According to Wikipedia, the internet, as of 2009, contains approximately 500 exabytes of information - three times more than it was in 2006 - and current estimates place the global data total for 2012 at 2.7 zettabytes.
These strange prefixes and large numbers can be hard to grasp at first.
Let’s start with explaining exactly how big 500 exabytes is.
That’s over 500,000 copies of the source material for the movie Avatar. That may make it not sound like a lot, but that really is a LOT of data. One copy of Avatar is equivalent to a 32-year long mp3 file, equivalent to over 280,000 hours of music. Alas, this is only equivalent to 17,520 songs, by my rough estimation of 16 songs to an hour - a little over 100 megabytes per hour according to one of my playlists. And that’s only data for one copy of Avatar. For comparison, Newgrounds.com currently hosts over 336,000 songs - each limited to 15 megabytes, that being just a small portion of the underground music scene and not including mainstream music. This means that Newgrounds.com has less than 5 terabytes of music - that’s just the music; this is less than 1/200th the amount of data that was needed to render the movie Avatar.
Obviously, Avatar was a big budget CGI movie and lots of data was generated, but…
The Internet is a BIG PLACE!
There are thousands of sites that are in the same category of hosting user-generated content, like Youtube, Facebook, DeviantArt, Furaffinity, 4chan, etc. (Makes you wonder how much porn there is, eh? lol)
My HDD alone has over 1TB of collected data on it, with about 500 gigabytes of it my own.
To think that one day, we might be able to fight today’s internet in our pockets. (All the world’s porn in the palms of our hands). :B
Do you see why we might need another prefix soon? In maybe as short a time as 15 years, we might have amassed more data than the largest data prefix, yottabyte.
(If my math has been a bit off over the course of this post, I apologize; large numbers can be hard to handle, even for someone who is comfortable with math problems.)
What do you think we should call 1024 yottabytes?