The expansion of the digital universe is accelerating, according to a study by IDC, an information and technology analysis firm, and EMC Corporation, a data management company. Powering this growth is the conversion of analog images, television broadcasts and voice calls to digital formats, as well as the storing and sharing of such files.

Number of bits in a byte: 8

Number of gigabytes in an exabyte: 1 billion

Exabytes of data created, captured and copied in 2006: 161

Equivalent data in stacks of books stretching from the earth to the sun: 12

Exabytes expected to be made in:

2007: 255

2010: 988

Available storage capacity today, in exabytes: 246

Number of bits stored on one square inch of a disk drive in:

1956: 2,000

2007: 100 billion

SOURCE: The Expanding Digital Universe, IDC White Paper, March 2007