Microsoft hopes to store data using DNA molecules


One cubic millimeter of DNA could be used to store one exabyte of data, which is equivalent to one billion gigabytes according to estimates from Microsoft Research. DNA molecules do not degrade in the same way that Blu-Ray discs and other physical media do. Data stored could remain intact and still be readable anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 years in the future. Twist Bioscience has seen the costs of producing its synthetic, storage-ready DNA decrease significantly which will make releasing a commercial version of a product that incorporates this technology. A custom DNA sequence costs about 10 cents per base, with Twist hoping to get that cost down to 2 cents. A team of scientists from the University of Washington recently showed that it was able to store images within DNA then retrieve them perfectly.


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