Back in 2008, the world consumed 9,570,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes of information. If all that digital information were to be printed and stacked up one-by-one, it would easily stretch from Earth to Neptune and back about 20 times.
According to research conducted at UC San Diego, 27 million computer servers processed 9.57 zettabytes of information back in 2008 — it’s safe to assume that today’s consumption is far greater than 9.57 zettabytes since growth is estimated to continue doubling every two years. By 2024, the amount of information processed, if printed, will extend more than 4.37 light-years away from Earth reaching Alpha Centauri.
Although that number is just an estimate, the researchers compiled the estimate with data from extensive interviews, sales figures, industry reports and other sources. While the researchers think the estimate is valid, they also admit that it isn’t complete because they didn’t include data from large companies like Google, Yahoo, or Microsoft.