World's information consumption: 9,570,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes per year: "The world's roughly 27 million computer servers processed 9.57 zettabytes of information in 2008, according to a paper to be presented April 7 at Storage Networking World's (SNW's) annual meeting in Santa Clara, Calif.
The first-of-its kind rigorous estimate was generated with server-processing performance standards, server-industry reports, interviews with information technology experts, sales figures from server manufacturers and other sources. (One zettabyte is 10 to the 21st power, or a million million gigabytes.)
The study estimated that enterprise server workloads are doubling about every two years, which means that by 2024 the world's enterprise servers will annually process the digital equivalent of a stack of books extending more than 4.37 light-years to Alpha Centauri, our closest neighboring star system in the Milky Way Galaxy. (Each book is assumed to be 4.8 centimeters thick and contain 2.5 megabytes of information.)"