Martin Lamonica of news.com reports on IBM's release of FileNet P8 4.0, an update to the content management software that integrates better with IBM middleware (IBM purchased Filenet for $1.6 billion in August 2006) and support Java server standards, and Web interface for front-ending IBM content management servers. The news story cites an IBM study claiming that by 2010 the amount of digital information in the world will double every 11 hours.
The 2010 prediction comes for an IBM Global Technical Services white paper published in July 2006, titled, "The toxic terabyte: How data-dumping threatens business efficiency."
It is projected that just four years from now, the world’s information base will be doubling in size every 11 hours. So rapid is the growth in the global stock of digital data that the very vocabulary used to indicate quantities has had to expand to keep pace. A decade or two ago, professional computer users and managers worked in kilobytes and megabytes. Now school children have access to laptops with tens of gigabytes of storage, and network managers have to think in terms of the terabyte (1,000 gigabytes) and the petabyte (1,000 terabytes). Beyond those lie the exabyte, zettabyte and yottabyte, each a thousand times bigger than the last.
I am not sure who the "It" is that projected the doubling of data every 11 hours or what data IBM used to arrive at the prediction, but data is accumulating at an increasing rate in servers, desktops, laptops, phones, RFID sensors, cameras and other devices. What I am sure about is that IBM and its competitors offering information lifecycle management (formerly known as managed storage) are salivating at the opportunity to fix the toxic terabyte problem (getting rid of low-value information as permitted and focusing storage and access on more high-value data) and to provide cheap, but high margin, yottabytes to the planet.