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The Future of Digital Storage

By fluffy grue in News
Sun Mar 19, 2000 at 12:19:15 AM EST
Tags: Technology (all tags)
Technology

[editor's note, by rusty] Two interesting storage related stories were submitted today by fluffy grue, so I rolled 'em up like Scotch tape into one story. Enjoy!
Scientists have figured out how to burn up to 10GB of data on a roll of adhesive tape using techniques very similar to a CD-R. (Link courtesy of Ars Technica.) And in other storage-related news today... IBM researchers have created nanometer-level magnetic storage which could theoretically be turned into super-dense hard drives. So now I can have a space-saving 20PB RAID and 10GB rolls of Scotch tape to transport my big files on. Life is good.


More about the "tape drive":

This storage mechanism is VERY interesting. First of all, the only necessary moving part is the laser, since the roll of tape can simply stay in one position (the laser moves and focuses to different depths, in an odd holographic-memory-meets-Edison-phonograph twist). The read laser can spin as quickly as necessary, so it can potentially have formidable data read-rates. This makes for an interesting storage media for digital video and embedded systems (they cite pocket computers and car radios as two examples). Finally, the read/write laser need only be 1mW, comparable to an everyday diode-based laser pointer.

So of course, the researchers are now working with the manufacturer of this particular brand of tape in order to design a useful storage media with it. My only concerns are the fact that adhesive tape isn't exactly as robust as magnetic tape (which doesn't exactly win awards with admins of legacy systems for its long-term storage and reliability), and there might be too much of a temptation to store long-term information on this media. After all, it's 10 whole gigabytes - finally enough to back up a modern home computer on "only" three rolls or so. :)

I just hope that my critical system backup doesn't turn out to be the one someone uses to pack up their box of winter clothing.

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Related Links
o roll of adhesive tape
o Ars Technica
o nanometer- level magnetic storage
o Also by fluffy grue


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The Future of Digital Storage | 11 comments (11 topical, editorial, 0 hidden)
Almost interesting, cute would be t... (none / 0) (#1)
by Nyarlathotep on Sat Mar 18, 2000 at 06:56:22 PM EST

Nyarlathotep voted -1 on this story.

Almost interesting, cute would be the word, but I must vote no since it is hardware.
Campus Crusade for Cthulhu -- it found me!

Re: Almost interesting, cute would be t... (none / 0) (#5)
by fluffy grue on Sun Mar 19, 2000 at 12:25:39 AM EST

It's not hardware. It's not a particular drive being worked on. It is emergent technology, which may eventually be hardware but is, in the meantime, technology. If you want to see a story posted, moderate it up, don't moderate it down with some overly-pedantic, opinion-based rationale.
--
"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]
[ Parent ]

Re: Almost interesting, cute would be t... (none / 0) (#6)
by Nyarlathotep on Sun Mar 19, 2000 at 02:15:31 AM EST

You are correct that it is more technology then hardware and I will consider this distiction when I continue to moderate down almost all hardware posts in the future. Your reasoning about down moderation is flawed. You would have everyone moderating things 0 or 1 which would eventually post everything.. and would suck.
Campus Crusade for Cthulhu -- it found me!
[ Parent ]
Re: Almost interesting, cute would be t... (5.00 / 2) (#7)
by rusty on Sun Mar 19, 2000 at 02:51:43 AM EST

FWIW, if N doesn't want to see hardware articles, that's a perfectly valid opinion. Hopefully sections will ease some of the tension of people's differing opinions about what should be posted. In any case, right now, the "no hardware" view seems to be the minority, but who knows, perhaps it will gain favor and fluffy's affinity for technology and hardware will come to be the unpopular opinion.

Anyway, the point of all this rambling is, a "no" vote on the basis of a story being about hardware is just as valid as any other vote on any other basis, really. At least he's consistent. :-) What would you rather see take the place of hardware stories, Nyarlathotep?

____
Not the real rusty
[ Parent ]

Re: Almost interesting, cute would be t... (3.00 / 1) (#8)
by Nyarlathotep on Sun Mar 19, 2000 at 03:38:57 AM EST

What would you rather see take the place of hardware stories, Nyarlathotep? Actaully, I like most of the stuff here, but I do not like the "Intell beats AMD by 2MHz" stories. Ahh.. If only I had the time to polish up the half ass features I wrote and never submitted here.. :) Well I'll submit sum stuff at some point. Actually I have the longish email I wrote about using protest votes to make people think more about what they submit. I really should try and clean that up and make it a story.. it might explain this social aspect of the voting system to the people who do not seem to understand it. There are a variety of protest voters here corrently: "no duplicate slashdot articles which are less informative then the slashdot article" (I think this is a reasonable one since it is pretty hard to be less informative the a slashdot article), "no wholesale coping on articles", "no mindless one uninformative non-funny links stories", etc. These protest votes are meaningful because they make people think about what they are doing. Personally I think it is more meaningful to say "I really like this story and I hope it gets posted, but I have seen lost of people doing a stupid version of soemthing simmilar recently, so I'm voing -1." There is normally not much danger of killing a good story this way, but it wakes people up more then just posting "this sucks" to only the bad stories. It amy have even helped keep people from doing the cut and paste the whole article thing.
Campus Crusade for Cthulhu -- it found me!
[ Parent ]
Re: Almost interesting, cute would be t... (none / 0) (#10)
by CodeWright on Mon Mar 20, 2000 at 08:17:04 AM EST

Nyarlathotep makes a good point, to whit:

Personally I think it is more meaningful to say "I really like this story and I hope it gets posted, but I have seen lots of people doing a stupid version of something similar recently, so I'm voting -1." There is normally not much danger of killing a good story this way, but it wakes people up more than just posting "this sucks" to only the bad stories.

The entire point of a moderation system is to bring about a resultant "filtering" of the information quality so that, hopefully, the good stuff floats to the top. If nobody makes the difficult but necessary decisions to take a stand and declare that some information is less worthwhile than the alternative, then there is no filter.

If other people are anything like me (read: lurker), then the only times you pop out of a lurkhole are on occasions of great agreement or disagreement -- simple cases where our disdain might be best spent filtering information for our colleagues are instead wasted on trying to avoid the offending info as quickly as possible. If more people took a conscientious stand like Nyarlathotep, we could all enjoy a higher quality of discussion (ie, nothing like the Other Place).

All that being said.... I have to disagree with Nyarlathotep on the "no hardware posts" stance -- I like hardware. Even though I've been living on my own for years now, my family still labors under the burden of tons of old computer junk that I've accumulated over the years and just can't get rid of -- old audio-couple modems, a Sun 'frame with a hydraulic top and tape drives (with the original OS on tape!), vt100s, vt220s, PCs, C64s, Apple's, a couple of VAX mini's, etc etc etc...



--
A: Because it destroys the flow of conversation.
Q: Why is top posting dumb? --clover_kicker

[ Parent ]
Re: Almost interesting, cute would be t... (none / 0) (#9)
by fluffy grue on Sun Mar 19, 2000 at 03:56:20 AM EST

Oh, I wasn't saying he shouldn't moderate hardware stories down because they're hardware. However, how I interpreted his statement was that it should be moderated down because it was in the wrong section. I apologize for the misunderstanding.
--
"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]
[ Parent ]

While I don't believe anything such... (none / 0) (#2)
by Seumas on Sat Mar 18, 2000 at 07:20:40 PM EST

Seumas voted 1 on this story.

While I don't believe anything such as this will become a commonly used method of storage, the purpose it serves is less directly applicable to business and economy and more worthwhile for the encouragement it gives to creativity, originality and the spirit of doing it to see if it can be done.

And yes, tape drives are nothing new, but I should hope one would not be so flippant as to qualify this as just your standard tape drive.
--
I just read K5 for the articles.

interesting and entertainingly geek... (none / 0) (#3)
by perky on Sat Mar 18, 2000 at 08:33:25 PM EST

perky voted 1 on this story.

interesting and entertainingly geeky. Almost seems like a hack.
-- "Freedom is the by-product of economic surplus" Aneurin Bevan
Note: spamblocker...

This is probably the coolest techy ... (none / 0) (#4)
by Chilles on Sat Mar 18, 2000 at 08:51:57 PM EST

Chilles voted 1 on this story.

This is probably the coolest techy trick ever. (well not so) But ueber geek McGuyver might've invented this if it used duct tape.

In case anyone is still reading this... (none / 0) (#11)
by fluffy grue on Wed Sep 19, 2001 at 02:38:48 AM EST

The tape drive link has moved.
--
"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]

The Future of Digital Storage | 11 comments (11 topical, 0 editorial, 0 hidden)
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