Sign In

Communications of the ACM

ACM TechNews

Humans Generate Most of the World’s Data, but Machines Are Catching Up

View as: Print Mobile App Share:
binary data

Credit: Gizmodo

IDC estimated in 2005 that all of the bytes in the digital universe amounted to 130 billion gigabytes. IDC's most recent estimate for 2012 put the total at 2.8 trillion gigabytes and it estimates that by 2020 the number will reach 40 trillion gigabytes. Consumers have constituted about 70 percent to 75 percent of that total each year so far, generating and consuming approximately 1.9 trillion gigabytes in 2012. About 80 percent of the new data produced by consumers last year came from digital TVs.

Although the amount of data created by consumers will continue to grow in absolute terms, the pool of data generated by connected devices is expanding faster. In 2012, machine-generated data accounted for 30 percent of all data created, up from 24 percent in 2011 and 16 percent five years ago, according to IDC.

Meanwhile, although the world's supply of big data is relatively small, the amount is growing every year. Much of the consumer-generated data is of little analytical value and is eventually erased. Holding more potential for big-data analysis are readings from machines monitoring the world, from surveillance equipment to medical devices.

From Technology Review 
View Full Article


Abstracts Copyright © 2013 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


No entries found

Sign In for Full Access
» Forgot Password? » Create an ACM Web Account