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Technology journey from floppy disk to cloud storage.

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Recently I was cleaning my house clearing out old books and computer junk that I've been storing for a long time when I found a box of floppy disks. I was filled with nostalgia. There was a time when I used floppy disks for everything games images and so many backups! I am the type of guy who is always thinking of backups and floppies had a tendency to fail so I always made backups of my backups. Now here I was holding all these useless floppy disks and thinking of how the world has changed. I hardly even see anyone with a floppy disk recently let alone a computer with a floppy drive. These floppy disks would only hold 1.44 MB and I started remembering how I had to use a computer program called ZipDivider. If you had a program or file that was larger 1.44 MB say 6 MB for example you would need to use this program to divide it up into 1.44 MB chunks to fit on multiple floppy disks.

Then the other user would have to download all these files into a folder on their own computer and starts zipping the files back together with another program. This was an interesting experience and a quick way to learn that you cannot damage even one floppy disk or you would not be able to put together the file!

I was thinking about all these nostalgic programs when my daughter walked into the room. She is four years old and she had no idea what I was holding in my hand. She asked me Why do you have a save button in your hand" She saw this floppy drive and all she saw was an icon for the save function the same way a bluebird represents Twitter or a blue F" represents Facebook. I tried to explain to my daughter what a floppy disk is that we used to use it as storage and she just laughed and said no no no you store data on a USB drive!" At this moment I was speechless because she is right!

In earlier times our computers PCs laptops used to come with Floppy Disks. With passage of time and advancements these were later replaced with CD and DVD disk drives. In current times all you have are disk drives and USB drives in the laptops and desktops

At this point my wife came in the room to tell me that she needed an mp3 burned onto a CD for a dance program at my daughter's school every student is performing a dance and the school has old computers that need the music on a CD to play for the program. I looked around and realized my laptop does not have a CD drive my servers don't have CD drives my desktop computer has a CD drive but it doesn't work! I never installed the drivers to make it work.

So I spent some time downloading the drivers and CD writing software only to realize that the program is not compatible with Windows 8.1. I had to walk through our apartment building knocking on doors and almost everyone said they didn't have a CD driver and didn't even know how to use one! Finally our apartment manager answered his door he is an older man with an older computer. After begging pleading and many thanks he agreed to burn the mp3 to a CD for my daughter.

The world is changing so fast it is like the ground is moving underneath us while we are still walking. A floppy disk is just a save button and no one knows about CD or DVD drivers! We all use USB thumb drives and cloud" storage like Dropbox.

A USB drive known by various names such as DiskOnKey thumb drives jump drives pen drives key drives tokens or simply USB drives are small and light weight gadgets slightly fatter than your car key. Consequently it can be put on a key chain and easily carried in your breast or trouser pocket. These USB drives allow you to store your data just as it used to be with floppy disks and later CDs and DVDs and can be as mobile as you. So the data moves with you even if you do not carry your PC or laptop or notebook along. You can use it at your destination on another PC or laptop. In a way you carry your work along.

In earlier times our computers PCs laptops used to come with Floppy Disks. With passage of time and advancements these were later replaced with CD and DVD disk drives. In current times all you have are disk drives and USB drives in the laptops and desktops. USB technology too has made substantial advancements in the sense that it has brought version 2.0 over the original design and then we have 3.0 as well.

The USB drive is no drive actually. It does not involve any movements; the floppy disks or the CDs and DVDs involve movements which require a drive to make it go in circles. Why then do we call it a drive Well the only explanation to that would be that the computers perform input output operations using the same system commands as for another disk drive; the operating system or the user interface treating the storage as just another drive. The USB drive is simply inserted into a socket on a computing device just as much as an electric plug and lo you have an additional mobile storage location! n
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Date:Nov 30, 2014
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