Friday, August 6, 2010

From Kilobytes to Terabytes

I started using computer in the late 80s and a brand new XP computer with no HDD and a monochrome monitor was my first exposure to a PC. This was the time when a very few in Pakistan had access to a PC and anyone knowing how to handle a computer was considered to be very highly technical. The PC had two slots for 5.5” diskettes, one to boot the system and run a programme and the other to store data on it. WordStar was the only word processor available then and one really had to remember all funny commands starting with “^”. Then in 1993, I purchased a 386DX with a 20MB HDD. And that was some transition. I could run the famous Windows 3.1 from the computer HDD automatically and 20 MB storage looked enormous.

By 1998, things had changed and matured tremendously but GBs were still a dream. And then there was something new and unbelieving. In 1998, I was associated with an organization that laid the foundations of present day NADRA. Even the word NADRA was coined by us (but believe me the name of wife of none of us working on the project was Nadra Begum). It was the time when the first election of the local government system was being held and a mass storage system was imported by NADRA to cater for the requirement of registration of the voters and later use the same data for the CNICs. And the storage of the NADRA’s system was FOUR Terabytes. When I heard it, I jumped into disbelief. I have been using MBs of HDD alright, but Tera was something unimaginable.

In the meantime, my PC kept improving and now I have a Core2Duo with some 350 GBs. My two sons also have the laptops with equal amount of storage space. But yesterday, they came home with a surprise for me. They bought a portable HDD with a storage capacity of 1 Terabytes. This time I wasn’t amazed or flabbergasted as now I know that even this storage capacity would soon run out and they would be looking for another storage, may be a 4 Terabytes thing – something that made me jump in 1998.

Time changes….


Shirazi said...

Ya, and in case of IT hardware and applications, it changes pretty fast.