DNA superstorage: Apocalypse-proofing the world’s data

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CREDIT: Thinkstock, via BBC.

Living things have been storing information in DNA since the dawn of life, including the instructions for building every human, animal, bacterium and plant. In terms of information density, DNA outclasses anything we’ve been able to invent. A single gram can contain as much data as 3 million CDs. All of the world’s data would fit in the back of a minivan.

Two scientists, Ewan Birney and Nick Goldman of the European Bioinformatics Institute think all the world’s information could be stored on DNA for 10,000 years – and even survive an apocalypse.

All of this is technically feasible, if not financially so.

“We’d outsource it,” says Goldman. “And we’d need unimaginable amounts of money and resources. But besides that, it’d work.”

Read the full story here: How to save civilisation in a single room

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