I have been following the PDC event and information outflows with very keen interest. The newly published document from Microsoft re. WinFS is certainly interesting reading, especially as it articulates a vision that validates our Virtuoso universal server (as far as data storage goes). The excerpt below pretty much sums this up:

Every year, as new hard disks get bigger and faster, applications catch up by producing more data. Hard disks are commonly used to store personal information: correspondence, personal contacts, and work documents. These items are currently treated as separate entities, yet they are interrelated on some level; and it's no surprise that e-mail comes from your personal contacts list and influences the work that you should be doing and hence determines the documents that you'll create. When you have a large number of items, it is important to have a flexible and efficient mechanism to search for particular items based on their properties and content. Up until now, storage mechanisms like Outlook