Think of a number …

In fact researchers at the University of California have said that the amount of information we generate has grown at twice the rate anticipated two years ago. We now have 24 exabytes of data at our disposal.

An exabyte, by the way, is one billion gigabytes. That’s 50,000 times the contents of the US Library of Congress.

Assuming that some of this ocean of data is useful, how are ordinary consumers to get any use from it? Well, IBM has come up with an answer.

Using a technique reminiscent of the punchcards used in early computers, it has found a way to store data onto polymer. At present, 25 million pages of text can be punched onto a postage stamp-sized piece of tape.

The researchers believe that this technique will eventually enable us to carry vast amounts of data on mobile phones, palm tops and even watches.

Even more data, then.

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