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SanDisk WORM SD Card Can Store Data For 100 Years

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the warranted-for-lifetime-of-original-purchaser dept.

Data Storage 267

CWmike writes "SanDisk has announced a 1GB Secure Digital card that can store data for 100 years, but can be written on only once. The WORM (write once, read many) card is 'tamper-proof' and data cannot be altered or deleted, SanDisk said in a statement. The card is designed for long-time preservation of crucial data like legal documents, medical files and forensic evidence, SanDisk said. SanDisk determined the media's 100-year data-retention lifespan based on internal tests conducted at normal room temperatures. The company said it is shipping the media in volume to the Japanese police force to archive images as an alternative to film. The company is working with a number of consumer electronics companies, including camera vendors, to support the media."

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Goodbye Lto4 tapes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686684)

Hello millions of tiny SD cards.

Finally (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686696)

Now I can consolidate my enormous collection of child pornography onto a single, convenient storage device.

1GB (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687212)

only 1GB? You aren't very serious about children.

That's what they said about CD-Rs (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686698)

.. then they started to rot at 3-5 years, in my experience..

Post this again in 100 years, until then, it's just more bullshit marketing.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (4, Insightful)

Jason Earl (1894) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686776)

Exactly, I would be curious to know what sort of "room temperature" tests can tell how reliable something is going to be in 100 years.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (3, Insightful)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686838)

I'm sure they mean accelerated aging tests, but I have no idea if they really are applicable for real world scenarios or just good for research. Maybe someone with a bit better scientific background can comment on such.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (-1, Troll)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687328)

Exactly, I would be curious to know what sort of "room temperature" tests can tell how reliable something is going to be in 100 years.

And "tamper-proof"... sure.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (3, Funny)

t33jster (1239616) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686814)

bullshit marketing

Seriously? I think it's brilliant marketing. Who wouldn't want to throw a WORM into their card reader?

I'll have 2, thank you.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (5, Funny)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686910)

Post this again in 100 years...

Yeah, I'll be here yelling DUPE!

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (5, Funny)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686946)

.. then they started to rot at 3-5 years, in my experience..

Post this again in 100 years, until then, it's just more bullshit marketing.

yes but this one comes with a money back gauretee if you can't read your data in 100 years.

Of course there won't be any software that can read the format. Even if it were unformatted data, We've gone from ebcdic to ascii to unicode is a very short time.

in 100 years logic will all be spintronic coupled quantum states locates in googles tritium powered headquarters on mars. You'll communicate with it by quantum entanglement of the implants added to your brain when you were an infant. The division between thought and recall will not be perceptible and you won't even be aware that information storage actually exists. the idea of possessing a physcial storage device will confuse people, so no one will actually know what it is.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (3, Informative)

FlyMysticalDJ (1660959) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686984)

And on top of all that, who knows where SanDisk will be in 100 years. Possibly bankrupt from having to refund everyone's WORM SD card.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (2, Insightful)

mirix (1649853) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687054)

I don't know if ASCII would be the best example. It's been around 50+ years, and is still readable. Hell, it's the default / only supported format for a lot of things, still. (well backward compatible extensions at least, CP-437 et al). UTF-8 is backwards compatible with ascii for that matter, too.

I'm rather disappointed with the lack of unicode support for a lot of things, in 2010. (slashdot for example).

I'd Imagine SDRSUFHC (Secure Digital Really Super Ultra Fucking High Capacity) card readers will be backwards compatible to plain old SD too. Besides, SD cards fall back to a slower plain old SPI bus, and that isn't going anywhere any time soon.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (2, Informative)

jibjibjib (889679) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687056)

Quantum entanglement is a reasonably well-understood phenomenon which isn't a method of communication. Please don't use it as a name for your unrelated hypothetical future technology.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687068)

remind me never to watch Star Trek with you. Or play Mass Effect. Or anything.

Thanks, Mr. Buzzkillinton.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (3, Informative)

Khyber (864651) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687332)

"Quantum entanglement is a reasonably well-understood phenomenon which isn't a method of communication."

Except you're wrong and we've been trying to build single-bit quantum radios for quite some time, now.

And guess what Quantum Computing will involve? Communication. That data isn't just going to magically appear.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (4, Interesting)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687116)

You're not being imaginative enough. One very hot topic of research in reliable computing right now are self-describing file formats. They are less space-efficient but they should effectively solve the software-side problem of long term storage. Interesting enough, the US National Archive is one of the biggest players on the block when it comes to thing kind of research.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686972)

Hmm. My CD-Rs from 1997 are still working without errors today. All my Verbratim, Memorex, and even cheap COMPUSA brand discs work no problem.

Naked on the floor of a basement isn't the best way to store CD-Rs, by the way.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (1)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687042)

Naked on the floor of a basement isn't the best way to store CD-Rs, by the way.

How your mom puts CDs in my basement is really unrelated to how long they last.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (3, Insightful)

vivian (156520) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687398)

My CD's are working fine too - wish I could say the same about the numerous CD and DVD dives or players I have had over the years.

I really hate CDs and DVDs - the medium itself is way too easy to damage, but worse, the bloody CD drives / players just have too many points of failure in them.
I had yet another DVD drive fail on me this week - I don't watch that many movies or burn a lot of stuff, but I have gone through at least 4 DVD drives, and quite a few CD drives over the years, not to mention 3 stand alone DVD players ie. that you plug into your TV.

I still have the first CD I bought, which still plays, but the CD player in the first stereo I bought to play it in died years ago - even though the radio and tape player in the same unit work fine. I had several walkman CD players too, that have call rapped out over the years too. The CD and DVD players are just too damn flakey and prone to going out of alignment or having their lasers burn out or something. I even had one DVD burner somehow leave a burn mark on a game CD when it failed! (it created a partly melted spot on the original game CD (which has to be in the drive when playing the game) which has rendered it unusable

Anything which depends on mechanical parts that have to line up precisely for successful reading and writing is just asking for trouble, and never going to be a good long term storage solution.

The good thing about solid state storage is there are no moving parts to go wrong - so as long as the device is designed to be adequately protected from static discharge, it's going to be a lot better, in my books.

I personally cant wait to see the death of CD/DVD (or for that matter, anything involving a spinning disk) to go the way of the dinousar once and for all.

hopefully this will bring in solid state storage to replace CD's and DVD's for everything - the sooner the better.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687014)

100 years. That's Kodachrome kinda time. But my great grand kids will be able to hold up a slide and see what I looked like, you can't even find a 5.25 floppy reader now. What's the likelihood this digital card will have a reader in 100 years? Other than that, digital beats film everywhere except time and nostalgia.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687076)

Assuming that the cards are, in fact, viable, the question won't be "can you find a reader?", it'll be "can you find(or reverse-engineer) the spec?". Given that, for normal SD cards, part of the spec is SPI mode, and the data are usually on a FAT16 or FAT32 filesystem, I'm guessing that the answer will be "Yes."

For consumer purposes, where Joe User doesn't want to have to be an electrical engineer just to look at the photos he took 20 years ago, a reader is pretty much a necessity. That is fair enough. A working reader is also extremely useful(not absolutely necessary; but sure pushes things toward "economic") when it comes to relatively dense storage that relies largely on the reader, like tapes and DVDs.

SD, though, does the majority of the work on the card, presenting a simple electrical interface to the world. Unless we are all fighting off mutant cockroaches with our bloodied bare hands, or chanting frenzied prayers to some iron-age sky-god, talking to one with future tech should be quite trivial. The only realistic way that the things could become unreadable would be if SanDisk fucked it up and decided that some sort of uber-proprietary DRM/obfuscation nonsense was absolutely vital...

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (1)

kolbe (320366) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687404)

Sure, it may last 100 years, but good luck finding something to read the data off in 10 years!

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687420)

You should buy better media. My oldest CD-Rs (Mitsui Gold, Philips/Ritek) were burned 02/1998. All of them still read perfectly.

Re:That's what they said about CD-Rs (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687430)

There are Archival CDs that exist, and some of mine have lasted a good 15 years so far with no errors on 100+ CDs. Only problem is, they're REALLY expensive.

For an example: http://www.delkin.com/products/archivalgold/cdr.html
$199 for 100 of these things.

You buy 10 cent CDs, you get 10 cent CDs =)

100 years sounds good... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686730)

Until you realize that the last reader for it will be extinct in 20.

I'll buy one so I can put it in my time capsule along with my 8" floppy and punch cards.

Re:100 years sounds good... (5, Interesting)

miggyb (1537903) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686784)

I don't know. On the other hand, the industry has gotten a lot better at reusing connections and being backwards-compatible. USB 3.0 is backwards compatible with USB 1.1, I believe. Serially attached SCSI uses the same connection as SATA. We haven't moved beyond 24 pin motherboard power connectors for ages. The new SDXC standard still accepts regular SD cards. The examples go on and on.

Re:100 years sounds good... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687066)

We haven't moved beyond 24 pin motherboard power connectors for ages.

That's because we've been moving beyond the desktop.

Re:100 years sounds good... (2, Informative)

cpirius (1002255) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687336)

Also, we moved from 20 to 24 pin not very long ago...

Re:100 years sounds good... (3, Interesting)

Mspangler (770054) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686794)

"Until you realize that the last reader for it will be extinct in 20."

Not necessarily. They still make turntables for LP records.
Also, if the specification is well documented, then someone can always build a reader if it really matters. File formats are likely to be more troublesome.

Re:100 years sounds good... (2, Insightful)

phillipsjk256 (1003466) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686990)

Portions of the specification are secret [4centity.com] .

Re:100 years sounds good... (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687038)

File formats can be figured out eventually. In 20years I'm pretty sure we'll be able to figure any weird file formats that are usable today.

Re:100 years sounds good... (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687052)

Or build a reader that has a bluetooth interface. It's probably easier to handle a wireless interface with a software radio than having to build in silica. Have it powered via low-power induction (i.e. wireless power).

Re:100 years sounds good... (2, Funny)

prkamath (1832520) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686798)

Why don't you try clay tablets? An egyptian friend highly recommends those!

Re:100 years sounds good... (4, Interesting)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687164)

Why don't you try clay tablets? An egyptian friend highly recommends those!

Egyptians mostly used papyrus, it was the Sumerians who used clay tablets for documents. If baked, they are virtually indestructible (there are plenty 5 or 6 thousand years old) and museums now have millions of them slowly being collated and translated.

Re:100 years sounds good... (3, Informative)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686926)

I'm more worried about the fact that much electronics may suffer from natural changes in soldering. Especially lead-free solder is suffering from this since tin (used for soldering) changes characteristic when it's stored too cold.

The chip may be good for 100 years but the carrier for the chip may not.

Re:100 years sounds good... (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686966)

in 100 years it should be easy enough to reattach to the pins, especially if one particular design, like WORM SD becomes popular, a bracket with MEM drills that cut through the plastic in the right places and connect to the chip in the right places should not be too expensive, at least not so for anyone who needs to get at 100 year old data badly enough. probably easier / cheaper than current paper restoration techniques

Re:100 years sounds good... (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687048)

Thats what a stove is for.

Re:100 years sounds good... (1)

jibjibjib (889679) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687110)

If electronics still exists in 100 years, someone will still be making microcontrollers with I/O pins plus whatever a recent USB-equivalent is. Building an SD-card reader is pretty trivial.

Re:100 years sounds good... (1)

OrangeTide (124937) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687230)

If someone were to take an SD card and send it to me 20 years in the past, I could have easily read the contents of it. With some transistors to deal with the 3V system and some fairly primitive circuitry. Using simplistic setups you can't read it very fast, but you can read SD.

I would expect 50 years from now, off the shelf components would be easily combined to read these SD cards. A little circuit to deal with the control voltages. a little processor to wiggle the data lines. Pretty straight forward. talking to SD is way less complicated than USB. It is even less complicated than talking to a PS/2 keyboard, electrically speaking.

ps - I can play ediphone phonograph cylinders, which were popular over 100 years ago. It takes a little effort to get it all set up, but it's about an evening worth of work.

Not Enough Testing (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686734)

Extrapolation is a dangerous and deceptive marketing strategy. If it is supposed to last 100 years, they should test it that long.

Re:Not Enough Testing (4, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686790)

Extrapolation is a dangerous and deceptive marketing strategy. If it is supposed to last 100 years, they should test it that long.

Nobody is going to sue in 100 years anyway...

Re:Not Enough Testing (2, Insightful)

balbus000 (1793324) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686994)

You don't have to wait 100 years if it fails early.

Re:Not Enough Testing (1)

TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687238)

No, but they might sue in 5.

Re:Not Enough Testing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687358)

You're a retard. Sorry, nobody's going to test a product for 100 years.

Not new (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686738)

"write once, read many." you mean like a cdr? Big whoop. I'm holding out for the "write once, read once" variety like on "mission impossible" where devices melt down after playing the message...

Re:Not new (1)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686772)

uh, an external hard drive, wire the power connection to a magnesium squib, thermite. might cost you 20-30 dollars, plus the drive. you'd probably want a 30 second delay or something.

Re:Not new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686832)

Uhh.... that's not like mission impossible at all. On the set of mission impossible they utilized a combinat

Re:Not new (1)

pookemon (909195) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687304)

Well I've got Write Only Memory - that's a start.

tamper proof (3, Interesting)

oakgrove (845019) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686752)

card is 'tamper proof' and data cannot be altered or deleted, SanDisk said in a statement

To what value of highly funded and motivated attacker? They left that part out of the marketing hyperbole.

Re:tamper proof (1)

i-like-burritos (1532531) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686762)

The worst part is that the police will be using it.
Imagine if the courts actually believed that it was tamper proof.

Re:tamper proof (4, Informative)

slashqwerty (1099091) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686830)

The worst part is that the police will be using it.
Imagine if the courts actually believed that it was tamper proof.

For non-repudiation [wikipedia.org] purposes, digital data can have a cryptographic hash computed on it. It can also be signed with a timestamp by a trusted third-party. If you're concerned about data being tampered with after it is on the card, the police can simply publish a cryptographic hash of every card they archive after they have written to it. In fact they can do that regardless of how they store the data.

Re:tamper proof (3, Insightful)

mentil (1748130) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687010)

the police can simply publish a cryptographic hash of every card they archive after they have written fabricated evidence to it.

FTFY

Re:tamper proof (3, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687130)

Given that most courts actually believe cops whose lips are moving, I strongly suspect that the overwhelming majority of "tampering" inflicted on these cards will be done the old fashioned way. That is, there will be basically no attacks against the card itself; but the pictures taken just might be of "tidied" scenes, and the occasional inconvenient card might get tragically lost.

Sure, for some super high-profile case, the NSA can probably just 'ask' Sandisk to produce as many writable duplicates of the allegedly unique cards as they need, and have Verisign or whoever provide a 'secure' timestamp for whatever time they require. For the overwhelming majority of cases, though, that'd be overkill. Heck, the tampering would probably be more likely to cause scandal than would the existing techniques for getting the results you want. Compared to the surprisingly useless; but emotionally compelling, junk like eyewitness testimony, photographs would be practically objective, particularly if a "common photoshop artefacts detectomatic" software package can be put together so that all but the most useless defense attorneys can trivially check for mediocre hackjobs.

Re:tamper proof (1)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686930)

If nothing else works use a paper punch.

Re:tamper proof (4, Insightful)

Merls the Sneaky (1031058) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687214)

Get an identical card. Copy the data to HDD, tamper away, rewrite to new card.

Tamper proof my arse.

Wow... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686754)

Wow, I submitted that like a week ago.

Re:Wow... (1)

Jason Earl (1894) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686780)

You should consider logging in Mr. Coward.

Re:Wow... (5, Funny)

nacturation (646836) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686818)

Wow, I submitted that like a week ago.

Your submission was undergoing testing for the last week at room temperature and the editors are now confident enough that it will be acceptable.

better luck next time (1)

OrangeTide (124937) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687300)

Bad timing on your part, better luck next time.

funny how people feel they own a story because they found it on the internet, when it was a journalist who wrote the article.

Most likely scenarios (2, Insightful)

alvinrod (889928) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686760)

Good for 100 years or your first fire, flood, or other natural disaster that destroys the physical media.

Also, even if these do last for 100 years, it's a certainty that there won't be any hardware left that's capable of reading SD cards. Even if there's some piece of hardware in a museum, it won't be able to interface with existing technology. Given the rapid pace of the tech industry, anything beyond 25 years is just fodder for marketing.

Re:Most likely scenarios (2, Interesting)

chx1975 (625070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686800)

They have interfaced SD card readers to the ZX Spectrum which is more like 30. Beyond that there are not really any computers worth mentioning. It's not impossible that you will be able to read it for quite long.

Re:Most likely scenarios (4, Insightful)

Ziekheid (1427027) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686842)

I find it funny that people actually think we won't be able to recreate old technology and we would have to go to museums to get the latest working readers.
Furthermore data will just be copied and copied and copied to the latest hype so these usb cards probably won't still be around by then.

Re:Most likely scenarios (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687394)

Ever watched Idiocracy? ;)

Re:Most likely scenarios (5, Insightful)

Vellmont (569020) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686944)

Every time I hear one of these "but.. but but nobody will have the technology to READ these things in 100 years!" all I hear is "everyone will be stupid in the future".

Someone recently created a device to read some crazy obscure technology produced by Edison to record sound on film, and that wasn't even all that valuable.

The real deal is, if the data is important enough someone will maintain the technology to read it, or re-create it.

The Egyptians did it first (0, Offtopic)

rolando2424 (1096299) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686764)

Paper (at least according to Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]

Re:The Egyptians did it first (4, Interesting)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686968)

It's not as simple as stating paper. There is good and there is bad paper when it comes to longevity. Papyrus (dead sea scrolls) and lint paper are good, but paper used in newspapers is decaying. The yellowish color that it gets over a few years is an indication of it's decay. It can be stopped, but at a cost.

Even laser printed paper have problems - the printed text is only sticking to the surface of the paper. Ink penetrates the paper more and bleeds into the fibers. But some ink is better than other so the ordinary inkjet ink may not be a good choice anyway. A classic ink based on metal (E.g. iron) may be a choice since even though it may change over time the print will last.

Laser etching in a glass pane would probably be safe from decay but would be hard to store safely - and be expensive. At least it would probably last long enough to allow the world to forget that this civilization did exist.

Re:The Egyptians did it first (0, Flamebait)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687082)

Glass would deform in that time scale...

This is going to seriously piss off RIAA and MPAA (1)

the_Bionic_lemming (446569) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686774)

A large portion of RIAA's and MPAA's distributors rely on people buying copy after copy of the same media as it gets damaged or lost.

Having a protected copy to hand down over 5 generations will SERIOUSLY cut into that profit margin.

Sony's bestselling cd is AC/DC "Back in Black", Imagine if dad has it on one of these sd's.

Re:This is going to seriously piss off RIAA and MP (2, Insightful)

Trogre (513942) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686840)

A large portion of RIAA's and MPAA's distributors rely on people buying copy after copy of the same media as it gets damaged or lost.

Or the shellac breaks in transit to the record store.

Re:This is going to seriously piss off RIAA and MP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686876)

On the other hand, this could be useful for them, assuming the cost can be bought down to CD/DVD equilavence.

If they use the 1GB capacity models for music, then they don't need to go to the expense of glass masters, and benefit from smaller packaging. If these can be mass produced cheaply in their initial state, then this allows them to publish localised versions, special editions et al. at a lower cost than CDs.

If the capacity can be improved in line with existing SD cards, then there's the potential for this to replace DVD and BD - with the packaging and transport savings that entails. As before, there'd be no need for glass masters. No glass masters means that they could potentially do small runs of niche titles that simply aren't cost effective with the current disc based media - which opens up the market to indies. If the mainstream publishers play their cards right, they could use this to their advantage.

Of course, this all assumes that the cost can be bought down. If that happens I've no doubt that EMI and the Ministry of Sound will be quick to take advantage of things - I'm not so sure about the other publishers though.

Re:This is going to seriously piss off RIAA and MP (3, Informative)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686992)

No it's not. This is a high priced flash-based SD card with only 1GB of storage that requires you to write to each card. It's too small for video, too expensive for consumers, and not useful for media mass production.

Besides, if the content mass production industry wanted to use a transistor-based solution they'd just mass produce a much cheaper ROM cartridge. But they won't, since DVDs and Blu-Ray disks can be pressed for pennies.

What an unfortunate name (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686788)

What an unfortunate name.
 
"And now we have here a priceless artifact from the year 2010...it seems to be some kind of computer storage device...plug it in the All Illumintating Slot down on the bottom, Zeth...no, wait, it says WORM on it. NO ZETH, DON'T DO IT, IT'S A WORM! No, Zeth, you may have destroyed us all!"

Test (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686792)

how do they test this?

100 years in what conditions? (4, Insightful)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686796)

So they state 100 years, based on tests at room temperature. Can we assume that the media will always be stored at room temperature in 100 year period? My experience generally shows this is wishful thinking, because air conditioning breaks down, heating fails, the room is not always dark, can have direct sunlight etc. Provide me something that can last a 100 years in conditions of, at least, 30 degree centigrade variation, and then it might be interesting. Certainly I won't be around to appreciate the end results, but for archival this is a requirement, IMHO.

Re:100 years in what conditions? (1)

Ron Bennett (14590) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686906)

Paper tape last several decades at minimum, and possibly much longer depending on paper quality.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_tape [wikipedia.org]

Punched paper tape is tried and true technology, but is slow and highly mechanical.

There's a newer variant of paper tape designed for archival purposes, that's not punched, but rather has lots of small dots printed on it.

Many DIY approaches skip the tape approach, and instead archive large amounts of data to ordinary printer paper...

http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/2009/07/the-paper-data-storage-option.html [codinghorror.com]

Ron

Re:100 years in what conditions? (1)

damnfuct (861910) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687250)

On the flip side, if your room-temperature-maintaining machinery breaks down, perhaps there are also some set of conditions that will prolong the device's life.

Hmm (1)

sea4ever (1628181) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686804)

Y'know..couldn't anything at all last for over one hundred years if you seal it away somewhere? Even a piece of paper cold last forever if you hid it in a vacuum chamber. :)

Re:Hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686958)

Even a piece of paper cold last forever if you hid it in a vacuum chamber

Brrrrrr... Very cold indeed...

Re:Hmm (1)

solafide (845228) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687012)

Meet my highly excited [wikipedia.org] friend the Atom.

Re:Hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32687022)

I don't have a vacuum chamber, but would a vacuum bed help preserve data?

What about EMP (electromagnetic pulse) (3, Interesting)

CorporalKlinger (871715) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686820)

Since this technology is still transistor-based, wouldn't it be susceptible to damage from an electromagnetic pulse, either from a high-energy radio frequency device or (less likely, I hope) a nuclear weapon? EM radiation can travel much farther than the actual blast radius, leaving these cards physically intact, but electrically unusable. If true, then why not stick with optical media such as a DVD or CD, which is more durable and offers similarly complex tamper protection (not to mention a larger capacity at a lower price)?

This looks like a solution in search of a problem.

Re:What about EMP (electromagnetic pulse) (1)

cameljockey91 (1455491) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686874)

Most writable CDs and DVDs degrade relatively quickly. The longest disc lifetime I've ever heard a manufacturer claim is 25 years. CD-R expected lifetime [wikipedia.org]

Re:What about EMP (electromagnetic pulse) (1)

Nemyst (1383049) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686916)

A simple Faraday cage can protect the cards from EM radiation.

Re:What about EMP (electromagnetic pulse) (1)

Vellmont (569020) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686960)

You're right. It's also vulnerable to flamethrowers, grenades, and the incredibly stupid who think it's a cheeseburger.

WTF? It's not supposed to be a solution to survive every conceivable and improbable disaster. It's just supposed to be reasonably reliable for archival purposes.

Re:What about EMP (electromagnetic pulse) (1)

phillipsjk256 (1003466) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687112)

I seem to remember old Programmable ROM chips used "fuse wires" to store the data.

I don't see why you would need temperature constraints if used such technology. You can then burn a fuse in the write path to prevent tampering.

If I was designing such a thing, I would also run, not walk from any format requiring DRM such as CPRM. Why not use the CF form-factor? Many cameras even support it.

One thing I wonder: can this card be used in cameras directly? Most cameras use a FAT filesystem which requires the FAT to be updated for every picture.

Good timing... (4, Interesting)

djupedal (584558) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686858)

...since the 'other news' today says that's all we have left [ http://www.physorg.com/news196489543.html [physorg.com] ]...

Re:Good timing... (1)

damnfuct (861910) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687260)

Cyborg sapiens

Plan to last 100 years (1)

Hybridan (857002) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686860)

Would it not be possible to specifically and intentionally (meaning specify in law or company policy that the funding would remain in place) plan to make sure that these were accessible and usable in 100 years. Archives and Archivist have already been doing this same thing for many years for other mediums. It would seem perfectly reasonable that if we as humans in current modern society are capable of data storage and retrieval from 100 years ago that it would be possible to do the same with new media for the next 100.

write once? (1)

neight108 (974915) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686884)

don't forget to proofread...

Re:write once? (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687188)

If there is a mistake...well, you should have used the 'Preview' button!

Ah Crap! (3, Informative)

drfreak (303147) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686920)

To me this is kind of a technology regression, unless one is only concerned with archiving. I used to work at a Title Company where scanned documents were stored on a WORM drive in the mid-90's. WORM as a technology in itself tends to err on the side of retention time vs. speed. Think about it, CD-R, DVD-R and every other -R is technically WORM media.

In 1000 Years (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686950)

In 1000 years humans will be crawling out of caves and bunkers to repopulate the surface from whatever disaster has befallen the Earth and wonder, "Why didn't those idiots in the 20th and 21st century use film? What are we supposed to do with these key chain fobs masquerading as 'archives?'"

Defective by design (1)

phillipsjk256 (1003466) | more than 4 years ago | (#32686970)

My first thought: WTF? Archival storage implementing DRM [4centity.com] ?

This thing is useless anyway since copyright terms now last longer than 100 years (depending on the age of the author).

Yes, all "SD cards [sdcard.org] " include CPRM; that technology never introduced into hard-disks because of a consumer backlash.

WOM - Write Only Memory (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32686976)

At a glance I thought I was reading about Write Only Memory [vmi.edu]

Bixby Snyder (1)

Smartcowboy (679871) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687058)

I'd buy that for a dollar!

WORM? (1)

rhizome (115711) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687126)

What is this, Byte Magazine in 1993?

The practical solution (3, Insightful)

oljanx (1318801) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687150)

We've seen a lot of discussion about "file and forget" digital storage methods. I haven't seen one that I'd trust over even a 10 year time period. The only practical solution is to periodically move your data over to the latest, long term storage medium. Make multiple copies each time, and store them in separate physical locations. I make sure to store all of my personal/financial/etc data along with family pictures and videos. I challenge you to go more than five years without wanting to watch your kids walk for the first time. This helps remind me when it's time to update.

30 Years Ago . . . (4, Informative)

NicknamesAreStupid (1040118) | more than 4 years ago | (#32687400)

. . . we called them PROMs. If you have an original IBM PC, its BIOS was in PROM. I bet most PROMs still are readable.
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