Finally, we get to understand the scale of a zettabyte

Reader comes to the rescue with a comparison our search had missed

A few weeks ago we tried and failed to place into its proper context the scale of a zettabyte -- 1 trillion gigabytes, or a 1 followed by 21 zeroes. EMC had offered a number of comparisons, the densest of which went like this:

"707 trillion copies of the more than 2,000-page U.S. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act signed into Law in March 2010. Stacked end to end, the documents would stretch from Earth to Pluto and back 16 times or cover every inch of the United States in paper 3 feet deep."

And at that point I broke out the surrender flag.

Others, however, do not give up so easily, witness reader Ted Zeh, who in an e-mail to me suggests this elegant comparison:

 "A zettabyte is about 1/5th of a Google."

Bingo!

(Update: Not so fast, say many of you. Update here.)

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