Yes, You’re Being Watched

YES, YOU’RE BEING WATCHED….Quiz question of the day: Which of these famous institutions has the most data?

A. Wal-Mart
B. The entire internet

The fact that I’m asking the question at all probably makes the answer obvious. Details here.

UPDATE: False alarm! John Berry, VP of Engineering for the Internet Archive, emails to say that their site alone has about 1000 terabytes of information online, compared to Wal-Mart’s 460 terabytes.

Google supposedly has 5,000 terabytes of hard drive space in its server farm.

UC Berkeley’s School of Information Management and Systems estimated last year that the total amount of information accessible via the internet was about 100,000 terabytes.

In other words, unless you take a very restricted view of the size of the internet (for example, limiting yourself to static public web pages), Wal-Mart is just a blip on the horizon.

Washington Monthly - Donate today and your gift will be doubled!

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation