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If you haven’t already seen this Evolution of Storage infographic, take a look. It’s beautiful and fun, and it has me thinking about the way we live.

Granted, we all know that information used to take up a great deal of physical space—on the pages of books or in the grooves vinyl records—and now takes up very little physical space. It’s not much of a revelation at this point in time. But it is fun to see the trend so nicely depicted.

I love the crackle of a needle on vinyl. I enjoy flipping through the pages of an open book. And I cherish the books and records I keep in my house. But most of the music I own (and most of what I read) is digital—the books and records are tools of beauty and presentation, not efficiency.

I’m reminded of the architect and designer William Morris’s famous words: “Have nothing in your houses which you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” As things get smaller, Morris’s adage becomes increasingly easier to abide.

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