In Recent years people stored enough data to fill 60,000 Libraries. “From the dawn of civilization until 2003, human generated five exabytes of data. Now we produce five exabytes every two days and the pace is accelerating” – Eric Schmidt. In a story On Exactitude in Science, Borges described an empire in which cartographers produced a map as big as the empire itself, it was so cumbersome that future generations left it to rot.
The world’s 4 billion cell-phone users are data-streams. Manufacturers have embedded 30m sensors into their products, converting bits of metal into data-generating nodes in the internet of things. The reality of the digital age is outpacing fiction. Data-heads frequently allow the beauty of their mathematical models to obscure the unreliability of the numbers they feed into them.