Facebook: 100 petabytes becomes exabytes not too far off in the future
Many people might know what a computer “byte” is, considering computers and data are so commonplace now verses 10 years ago. For those that don’t know, a single byte is one unit of measure in computers. One byte equates to a single character. For example the letter “A” typed out is one byte of data. It takes 1024 bytes to make up one Kilobyte. For example, two kilobytes would be equal to a one page typewritten document. As you get higher up in the volume of data, you move on to megabytes, gigabytes, terabytes, petabytes and exabytes.
A petabyte is equal to one quadrillion bytes. To add perspective, two petabytes equate to all academic research libraries in the entire United States. Now, think about that and then think about what Facebook VP of Infrastructure Engineering Jay Parikh says in an interview with CNET:
It’s about how do we [Facebook] continue to scale out and handle this ever-increasing amount of data. 100 petabytes becomes exabytes not too far off in the future. 100 petabytes is going to be boring for us a couple of years from now.
Wow! That is just a enormous amount of data. Facebook is going through 100 petabytes of data, and somewhere in the future he is saying Facebook will be going through exabytes of data. Five exabytes is equal to all words ever spoken by human beings.
In the interview, it also says how Parikh keeps Facebook running, running fast and staying up every day throughout the year. He is one of the most important people at Facebook next to Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg, tasked with making Facebook seem untouchable as they near one billion users. It’s a fascinating read. And special thanks to Ripu DaMan Jain for pointing me to the article.