OK, so I'm feeling old today. I just came across a post on slashdot, talking about a 1.5 petabyte system. A petabyte is 1,000 terabytes. What's a terabyte, you ask? That is 1,000 Gigabytes. I have about .5 Terabytes worth of storage attached to my computer (500 Gigabytes), and that's a lot. Most people are happy with 40 Gigabyte hard drives.
I remember, somewhat fondly, the old PDP-11 70 that I worked with in graduate school, back in the early '80s. It had a 10 MB hard drive, that required two people to lift and put into the drive bay. I have no idea how expensive it was, but I imagine it cost thousands of dollars. Now, a flash drive with 10+ times that will sit lightly on your neck, and lighten your wallet by a mere $20.
And there are 1 TB hard drives (that's 100,000 times that old 10 MB drive) that you can now take away for a mere $900, and will sit on your desk.
No wonder people keep talking about how people will stop deleting things. With tools like spotlight, or google desktop search, you can find anything, at any time. I have files that I've carried from my first computer in 1987, that are on my hard drive now. I won't be surprised if I still have those files on my new computer with a 1 PB hard drive that I buy in 20 years time.