A frightening little bit of technology
cclist at sydex.com
Thu Sep 6 17:15:24 CDT 2007
On 6 Sep 2007 at 11:44, Al Kossow wrote:
> How to make an unreliable medium even LESS reliable.
Well, I don't know. In the universe of "read-and-write unreliable
media", floppies rate as pretty darned reliable from the standpoint
of "How many years can elapse between writing and reading before the
medium becomes unreadable?"
Hard disks seem to develop problems regularly (bumpers turning to goo
etc., not being able to locate the correct controller to read the old
stuff), tapes seem to have all sorts of problems from QIC cartridges
shedding to the wonderful experience of oxide sticking to the next
layer on 1/2" 9-track tape (it really makes a mess on a 200 ips
streamer). MO carts that fail mysteriously or problems locating the
appropriate drive. I don't know how USB flash will fare in 30 years.
Punched cards are still pretty good. I can still read the first
floppies I wrote over 30 years ago just fine--and have 3.5" diskettes
more than 20 years old that read just fine.
Basalt tablets--now there's a reliable medium.
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