We all take it for granted that disk capacities keep rising, but did you ever wonder why?Disks are way more complex than you knowChips have a lot of brilliant technology, but disk drives are just as complex.
Storage is what makes a computer your computer. Robin Harris writes about storage and other tech with a focus on the SOHO/SMB market. And fun stuff, too, like PS3 supercomputers and Google's technology.
Robin Harris is Chief Analyst at TechnoQWAN LLC, based in Sedona, Arizona. He has over 30 years in the IT industry, including DEC and Sun, and degrees from Yale and the Wharton School.
Ricardo Bilton writes for ZDNet's The ToyBox.
The disk guys are going to try.This year's Diskcon proves the storage device industry's ambitions are as lofty as ever.
How about never - is never good for you?As a long-time fan of flash (NAND) storage - and a flash notebook long-ago user - I've been repeatedly surprised at how the hype for flash drives and the reality have diverged (see Hybrid drives: not so fast, Flash drives: your mileage WILL vary, and Power, notebooks and solid state disk).
Many people reacted with disbelief to my recent series on data corruption (see How data gets lost, 50 ways to lose your data and How Microsoft puts your data at risk), claiming it had never happened to them. Really?
Tired of your slow notebook burner?Want to rip a lot of CDs - as I have in the last week?
I used - and loved - a Windows flash disk notebook for 5 years. The flash drive doubled my battery life and gave me a better sleep mode better than any I've had since - PC or Mac.
Compression even your Mom will loveThe compression ratio is better than 4:1. Try that with Lempel-Ziv!
Supercomputing Costco-styleIn 1997, IBM's Deep Blue supercomputer beat world chess champion Gary Kasparov. Today you can build a more powerful machine for less than $2,500 in an 11" x 12" x 17" box.
A recent problem with the firmware in a Seagate drive offers a peek at the 400,000 lines of spaghetti code inside a modern disk. It is a cautionary tale for those who blithely assume that disk drives "just work.
Vendors are pimping hybrid drives of flash memory and rotating disks. Disk drives and flash memory have very specific performance profiles.