IBM have just created the beginning to the end…
Well, not quite. But the implications of this could be massive. Essentially what they have done is reduced the size of matter that data can be stored on by a factor of 100,000.
Currently, some of the best hard disk drives around use around 100,00 atoms to store a bit of data. IBM have today announced that they have managed to use one atom to store 1 bit. In real terms, what does that mean for us? It means that the smartwatch on your wrist could potentially hold up to 120,000gb of data.
We still reckon Apple will only continue to release 16gb, 32gb models etc…
There’s no danger of this technology hitting the commercial market too soon, though. It wouldn’t be feasible to use the technology involved in the experiment, which required an ultra-high vacuum, low vibration, and liquid helium for icy cold temperatures. “Anything you can carry around is going to have to relax those conditions – unless it’s a special-purpose supercomputer,” said the head of nanosciences project at IBM, Christopher Lutz
Let’s fantasise for a minute though – we know that cramming loads of data into small places is essential for the development of AI. So let’s assume that this technology continues to be fine tuned. Then what? We can have trillions of gigabytes data stored on a chip the size of a pea? A pinhead? Inside our heads?!
Furthermore, they were able to store 2 of these atoms within a nanometre of each-other and still yield the same results whilst still being measure independently. That would equate to around 600,000gb per square inch (600 terrabytes).
If the ability to create something, anything, is requisite to the knowledge we have, then surely this is a step in the direction of an AI takeover of some form. I speak jovially, but the ramifications for this type of discovery in the not too distant future could be huge. After all, wasn’t the very Universe we live in the size of a pea, once?