The Internet Is Running Out of Water. Here's What That Means

And it keeps asking for more.
Derya Ozdemir

These few decades heralded a new era in digital information processing, with microchips doubling in speed every two years and miniaturizing equipment that once took up entire rooms. Today, the smartphone you're reading this article on probably outperforms the best technologies of the past, as massive data centers filled with computers holding all kinds of information keep our world turning. These computers, known as servers, provide support for the software, apps, and websites that we use every day.

However, making sure the rows of powerful computers within these data centers don't overheat necessitates millions of gallons of water to be used per day. And the increased usage of data-intensive cloud services (such as Zoom, Netflix, YouTube, and online gaming) has boosted demand for the computing capacity provided by data centers throughout the world.