Last spring, Michael Sauers predicted that there would be a one-terabyte hard disk on the market before the end of 2006, and that it would cost a lot less than $1,000. (I don’t have a link. Travelin’ Librarian doesn’t have a search function.) I agreed with the prediction.
Well, Michael beat me to the post today. He found it on Engadget. In my boring old printist manner, I read it in today’s San Francisco Chronicle [the link's to a "Technology Chronicles" post, but that post also appeared in this morning's printed newspaper--it's one of several SFChron blogs].
We were off by three months. But his prediction nearly a year ahead was pretty good, albeit consistent with the growth rate of PC-level hard disk capacity. (Moore’s law? No, much faster than that.)
The new Hitachi drive won’t be on the market until late March. It will be reasonably priced–about $400, so for less than a kilobuck you could have a live-backup [Raid 1] one-terabyte storage system [assuming you have a RAID controller and OS that can handle two terabytes!].
I’m a little surprised it’s Hitachi rather than Seagate, but this competition serves us well. I will not be surprised if Seagate manages to get a one terabyte drive to the market within a few weeks of Hitachi–and that “few weeks” could be either after or before.
I remember being impressed when total RLG storage capacity on the disk farm passed a terabyte. I remember more recently when RLG added another terabyte, for a sum considerably exceeding $399 (by a couple orders of magnitude, if I recall correctly). Of course, that’s server-class disk storage, which continues to be several times as expensive as PC-class storage.
I also remember that I wrote MARC for Library Use on my first personal computer, a Morrow MicroDecision MD2, running CP/M. Total disk storage: Unlimited, but at something like 360KB (that’s kilobytes, not megabytes or gigabytes) at a time. The MD2 had two diskette drives–5.25″ diskettes, the last true “floppies”–with one used for the OS and programs, the other for data. No hard disk. WordStar–and Personal Pearl relational database for the bibliography and glossary.