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DNA Data Storage: Your Genetic Material Is a Hard Drive
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Why Does The Government Want Your DNA?
Tech experts are warning that we may lose all our important data if we continue to rely on digital storage, but how can we this be possible? Digital mediums do degrade over time, but even if the media stays in good condition, there's the problem of accessing it. What we consider to be a universal device today might be totally obsolete in a decade.
Imagine if you had all your data stored on a bunch of floppy discs. The data might not have degraded, but where would you find a floppy drive to read it? Vint Cerf, one of the men legitimately credited with creating the Internet has been warning people of a coming "Digital Dark Age" if we don't take certain precautions to move our data onto universal formats that don't degrade over time.
For years scientists have had the idea that if DNA can save genetic information, why can't it be used to store digital information too? George Church, a Harvard professor who is working on human genome mapping, figured out a way to translate the 1's and O's of data into the base pairs of AT and GC representing in DNA. He was able to translate 20 million copies of his book onto what was essentially what was the size of a period on a piece of paper.
What formats do you use to store your data? Do you think DNA storage is the solution to preventing a "digital dark age"? Let us know in the comments!
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Internet Pioneer Warns Our Era Could Become The 'Digital Dark Ages (NPR)
"What happens when today's high-tech data storage systems become tomorrow's floppy discs?"
Google exec: Digital media could vanish (Fortune)
"Google's Vice President, Vint Cerf, says if today's technology becomes obsolete, our data could be lost forever."
Scientists store data inside DNA that could last MILLIONS of years (Daily Mail)
"Just one gram of DNA can store the equivalent of 14,000 Blu-ray discs."