What if there was a storage medium capable of storing billions of gigabytes of data in the size of a sugar crystal, with the ability to securely preserve it for centuries without decay or data loss? How far-fetched does it seem to be able to shrink the same amount of information currently filling a big data center down to the size of a sugar cube, and then to store it in a garage for hundreds of years without deterioration? With the development of DNA-based storage, this dream is closer to reality than we might think.

As the digital universe expands to tens of trillions of gigabytes within the next few years alone, the question of how to store all of this data becomes increasingly more complicated. Current storage technologies severely lack the capability or capacity to meet the demands of such exponential data growth. Long considered a pipe dream, scientists have sought to utilize the DNA molecule and its distinct properties for data storage. With its incredibly compact and dense nature, durability, and long shelf life, DNA seems uniquely suited for both large volume and long-term storage. In fact, it is estimated that less than 20 grams of DNA could store all the digital data in the world, and that DNA can be securely stored for thousands, if not a million years.

Recently, scientists and researchers from Microsoft and a number of other research institutions and universities have ...

Read more at: http://www.zasio.com/dna-based-storage-the-future-of-data-archiving/

Author: Jared Walker, Senior Research Analyst at Zasio Enterprises, Inc.