Hard Drive Sizes

Hard DriveBack in the late 1980s, NeXT released a high end workstation that had no hard drive. It only had a CD, because, hey, hard drives were a thing of the past. Sure, they been coming down in price at an amazing speed, but how long could that last? The manufacturers had worked all the magic they could. There just was no way they were going to be able to keep this up. The hard drive had come to the end of the road. It was time for something new.

There was just one tiny problem: the hard drive manufacturers seem to have had an endless supply of magic to do on magnetic plates.The cost of hard drive storage has gone down exponentially over time and there seems to be no end in sight. Let me just give you a little taste of it. This is the cost of one gigabyte of data storage over the years.

1980: $1,000,000.00
1985:   $100,000.00
1990:    $10,000.00
1995:       $300.00
2000:        $10.00
2005:         $0.20
2010:         $0.03

Of course, the drives are smaller, quieter, and faster. So there’s a trade off. Oh, wait…

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About Frank Moraes

Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

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