Have you ever wanted to know how much information is processed a year by all the computer servers in the world combined? Yeah, me neither, but apparently a few people did. That is why three scientists from UC San Diego have literally estimated the annual amount of business related information processed by the world's computer servers.
According to the scientists, the amount of processed information is equivalent to a 5.6-billion-mile-high stack of books that stretched from the Earth to Neptune and back, repeated about 20 times of course.
That's right, the roughly 27 million computer servers in the world processed 9.57 zettabytes of information in 2008 according to a paper presented at Storage Networking World's (SNWs) annual meeting in California. This estimate, which is the first of its kind, was generated with server-processing performance standards, server industry reports, interviews with information technology experts, sales figures from server manufacturers and a few other sources.
If you were like me and wondering what in the world a zettabyte is, then here is your answer. A zettabyte is 10 to the 21st power, or a million million gigabytes. The study estimated that server workloads are doubling about every two years , which means that by the year 2024 the world's enterprise servers will annually process the digital equivalent of a stack of books extending more than 4.37 light-years to Alpha Centauri, which is our closest neighboring star system in the Milky Way Galaxy.
That is a lot of information, and these scientists definitely had a lot of spare time on their hands in order to calculate something as monumental as this. Kudos to them because there is no way I would have the patience to calculate something like that.
Source: MBPE Capital - The worlds roughly 27 million computer servers processed 9.57 zettabytes of information in 2008