Yesterday and today, I participated on a panel session at the 2012 Designing Storage Architectures (DSA) Workshop in Washington, DC. This event brings together library, government, academic and industry participants to talk about research and advances in digital preservation and long-term digital storage.
The challenge to the panelists was to propose a design for 5, 20 and 50 petabyte (PB) storage systems today (2012), in three years (2015) and in six years (2018). I believe the intent was to show that different sized systems in different technology eras would require different media and system designs. My contention is that hard drive based systems are the obvious solution for all three cases, both today and in six years time. Details are in my talk linked below.
With slides available via the workshop web site.
Disks are cheap, take two (thousand).