Some random supporting data for the previous post

Four years ago pretty much to the day, on 5 August 2003, I bought at 64Mb data stick for £28.99.

A bit less than two years ago – on 15 November 2005, I bought a 1Gb data stick for £35.99 .

Today, exactly the same 1Gb data stick is available for £7.99.

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Cost per megabyte has dropped by over 98% in four years.

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In June, I was given a 64Mb data stick at a trade show.  It had quite an interesting presentation on it.  I have looked at the presentation.  I will throw the data stick away – it has no value.

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Extrapolate four more years, and 1Gb would cost 16p.  Assuming that nobody would bother to sell one of those, £7.99 would buy 50Gb.

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Data sticks are a pretty expensive way of buying storage.  A 750Gb hard disk already costs less than 20p per gigabyte.

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As it happens, on 9 August 2004, I bought a 160Gb hard drive for £68.99, or about 43p per gigabyte.

And on 5 October 2006, I bought a 500Gb hard drive for £139.99, or about 28p per gigabyte.

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Extrapolate that four more years, and you get to less than 5p per gigabyte.

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Whether a lifetime’s data will fit into something the size of a speck of dust probably doesn’t matter very much – being a few orders of magnitude out and ‘only’ needing a sugar lump sized things doesn’t really change the implications.  Price is going to be a more important driver than physical size.

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To extrapolate four years’ data in a straight line over seventy years is self-evidently complete folly.

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[small print: All prices exclude VAT.  And no, I am not so sad that I remember any of this,  but I buy most of this stuff through an outfit which still has every transaction back to 2001 online.]