Researchers are continuing to get more out of familiar storage technologies like electronic memory chips, magnetic disk drives and CDs, and are developing new forms of disk drives and memory chips. Data storage research is also branching into new territories -- including storing bits of data in individual atoms -- that could yield media with enormous capacities.
The Data Storage topic bundle includes a brief tour of recent developments that makes connections among key issues. It also includes the text of 12 in-depth stories about key data storage research projects, and five related images.
The bundle is organized into three major categories:
1. improvements to existing technologies
2. new versions of today's technologies
3. alternative technologies.
Story subjects include a prototype device capable holding 47 DVDs worth of information per square inch, a data-reading sensor that is only a few atoms wide, and a technique for storing data in the DNA of living bacteria.