Magazine article Information Today

Definitely Too Much Info

Magazine article Information Today

Definitely Too Much Info

Article excerpt

I recently returned from the Internet Librarian conference. As usual, it offered a useful mix of practical and visionary presentations along with excellent networking opportunities. Though the event is organized by ITI, the publisher of Information Today, my roles were as attendee and reporter.

The conference-in the ever-popular Monterey, Calif., location-drew more than 1,100 participants despite continuing economic woes and curtailed travel budgets. I attended excellent sessions on e-resources and digital libraries, searching and search engines, content management strategies, technology trends, and more. Look for coverage in the January 2004 issue of Information Today.

Researchers Peter Lyman and Hal R. Varian from the University of California-Berkeley's School of Information Management and Systems have released the results of their study "How Much Information? 2003" (http://www .sims.berkeley.edu/research/projects/how-much-info-2003). According to the report, "Newly created information is stored in four physical media-print, film, magnetic, and optical-and seen or heard in four information flows through electronic channels: telephone, radio and TV, and the Internet."

The study found that we produced about five exabytes of new information in 2002. Of this, 92 percent was stored on magnetic media, mostly hard disks. According to the report, five exabytes of information is equivalent to the information contained in a half million new libraries the size of the Library of Congress' print collections. And this is just in 1 year. I knew there was a reason I felt so overwhelmed. …

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