Backing up hard to do, but worth it

This is an edited version of my weekly column for Loose Wire Service, a service providing print publications with technology writing designed for the general reader. Email me if you’re interested in learning more. Sometimes it takes something like an earthquake to realize that you’re vulnerable. Once the ground stops shaking and you’ve begun to …

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Drive Safely

This is probably the way to go with USB drives — security features that the user has to follow, or else the device won’t work.  Verbatim’s new Store ‘n’ Go Corporate Secure USB Drives’ mandatory security features safeguard all device contents with a complex password. Hack resistant feature locks down device after 10 failed logon …

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8 GB Is the New 8 MB

At what point do USB flash drives replace iPods, external hard drives or laptops? M-Systems has announced the 8GB DiskOnKey USB drive and promises a 128 GB version by the end of the decade. AS EverythingUSB comments: their announcement reminds us how far they’ve the NAND industry has come. In 2000, the Israeli-company brought us a …

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Say Goodbye To The USB Flash Drive?

I had an interesting conversation the other day with Trek 2000’s chief financial officer, Gurcharan Singh. Trek, a Singapore company, claim to be the originators of the USB drive, or thumb drive as they call it, and are currently sueing a company called M-Systems in a test case over who owns the patent for putting flash …

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This week’s column – Visualizing Tools

This week’s Loose Wire column takes a look at programs that visualize your hard disk. ONE OF THE CRAZY THINGS about computers is that the more we use them, the more of a mystery they become. Think of all the things you’ve done with your computer: reading and writing e-mail, browsing Web sites, downloading (and …

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This week’s column – Flash Drives Aren’t Flash

This week’s Loose Wire column is about Flash drives:  I LEFT YOU last week in the capable hands of Ethel Girdle, the fictitious octogenarian who took her accusations of built-in obsolescence to the technology giants. One of her beefs was about so-called flash drives–small devices that store data, for example as memory cards for MP3 …

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The Smallest Hard Drive In The World

Small is beautiful. The Guinness World Records has certified Toshiba’s 0.85-inch hard disk drive as the smallest HDD in the world (it’s not actually out yet; expect to see it in September). Toshiba say it’s the first hard disk drive “to deliver multi-gigabyte data storage in a sub-one-inch form factor”. (The 0.85-inch measurement refers to …

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Say Hi To The 400GB Hard Drive

Are we far away from terrabyte hard drives? Hitachi said today they have “the world’s highest capacity 3.5-inch ATA hard drive, the 400GB Deskstar 7K400”. The new drive has been designed for audio video The Deskstar 7K400 provides enough capacity to store the following: 400 hours of standard TV programming 45 hours of HDTV programming …

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News: Tiny Drives Get Bigger

 Hitachi today is now shipping one-inch diameter drives storing 4 gigabytes with a a data transfer rate that is 70 percent faster than the previous-generation Microdrive. Hitachi reckons it’s the “world’s smallest hard disk drive“, weighing just over a half an ounce and equivalent in size to a matchbook. Hitachi will continue to offer its …

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News: Lawsuits over Hard Drive Size

 Something I’ve often wondered about: why is a 20 gigabyte hard-drive actually only 18.6 GB? Some folk in LA are not only wondering, they’re suing. The Register reports that US PC users have banded together to protest against “deceptive advertising” of hard drive capacity by filling a lawsuit against the world’s biggest computer manufacturers. The …

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