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BBC tackles big data dilemma with smart IT structuring

Loek Essers | June 27, 2011
The BBC's website is among the 50 most-visited in the world, making it a challenge to serve traffic yet keep costs low.

"Hard disks are nice but they take power and they break," Van Gulik said.

Instead, he said, "We store it in very large tape robots the size of a small tennis field which is basically packed with tapes and lots of arms and robots moving around to move the tapes around."

A hard disk containing one or two hours of high-definition video would cost between £30 and £40 a year in electricity alone. With overhead costs for the building or cooling that amount would be even higher. If the data is stored on tapes in a tape robot the cost for the same amount of data can be reduced to pennies, he said.


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