A revolution is coming in information.

All of us in IT talk about how much information has been growing over the past decade. Now, a new study backs up my premise that information growth will likely actually accelerate over the next few years. This IDC study (sponsored by EMC) predicts that information added annually will increase 6 fold from 2006 to 2010. This translates to 988 Exabytes of information in 2010!

What is most interesting is that in 2007 we will actually cross over to the point where we create more digital information than we have storage capacity. We are probably not going to declare a “storage crisis” (a la an “energy crisis”) just yet but it does illustrate how quickly we a growing our digital information.

I talked about the growth drivers in a previous blog but suffice to say we will have some major new growth drivers including video, voice, and images. One of the most significant changes will be that 70% of the information in 2010 will be created by individuals.

OK, so you might think that this does not translate directly to your enterprise or business but that is not necessarily true. It is believed that “organizations” will touch at least 85% of this user generated content.

You can read the whole whitepaper here. What I will be discussing in this and a couple of future posts is how organizations need to think about access to this information. I will also present you my 8 Rules for Information 2.0. Fundamentally, with the amount and type of information we will produce in the future, we need to completely change how we think about information.

In terms of access to information, I believe it will be “flat,” it will be “deep,” and it will be “specialized.” Flat access simply means that the conduits to obtain information will be very direct. YouTube is a perfect example; with just a single intermediary, you can publish video for direct consumption world-wide to anyone with a network connection. There is no longer a filter or limited set of outlets for access to consumers.

Access to information will also be “deep.”  This is a direct correlation to “The Long Tail” principle. A consumer will have access to more and more sources of information with ever higher degrees of specialization.

Information will continue to evolve and become more “specialized.” Simply put, we will be able to build personalized “information services” that deliver the very specific information we require for a given situation.

While these concepts are more and more visible on the Web – these same concepts translate to businesses and organizations. For organizations to get the maximum value from their information they must also evolve how they think about information.

In short, here are the 8 Rules I will be discussing:

1. Information is decoupled from Applications

2. Information is accessible via Web Services

3. Information Metadata is integrated with all data

4. Information Security is explicit and built in

5. Information Optimizations are built in as services

6. Information is personalized

7. Information is delivered both real time and on demand

8. Information is simply always available

More Later – for now, if you are interested, take a look at the whitepaper.



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