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In defiance of the destroying effects of time on data, Hitachi claims to have developed a quartz glass storage chip that has the ability to retain information forever.

Current storage technologies such as DVDs and hard drives can store data for a long time but, eventually -- probably after their owners have passed away -- they all break down and lose whatever information they once held. Now, Hitachi is aiming to change that concept with a quartz glass storage chip.

In order to withstand the test of time and endure extreme conditions without degrading, the data encoded on the chip is stored in binary form with tiny dots set inside a thin sheet of quartz glass. When the data is needed, it can then be read using a common optical microscope.

In addition to being resistant to water, chemicals and radio waves, the chip can withstand being heated to 1,832 degrees Fahrenheit for up to two hours without taking any damaged -- pretty remarkable stuff considering it looks just like a tiny piece of glass.