Number of pages indexed by Google over time

I could not find out how many pages Google indexed over time but I found the self-reported numbers of Google’s timeline. Here they are in a convenient table:

When Number of web pages indexed
May-June 2000 1 billion
November-December 2000 1.3 billion
July – August 2002 2.5 billion
November – December 2002 4 billion
January – February 2004 4.28 billion
November – December 2004 8 billion
August 2005 8.2 billion

It seems, roughly speaking, that the number of pages indexed doubles every 16 months or so though the growth seems to be sometimes sudden. It is likely that the number of pages indexed depends on hardware and Google probably purchase its hardware in large bundles. Also, competition from other search engines is likely to be a factor.

Update: I’m sorry. I was motivated partly in my quest by a post by Will which I read earlier today. I should have given him credit. Will also points out that the index size as reported by Google needs to be verified. I really like this link Will sent me about why the search problem is hard.

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