Future of data storage, DVD+RW, Universal MiniDisc

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by macphoria, May 13, 2003.

  1. macrumors 6502a

    macphoria

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2002
    #1
    I believe optical storage device is the way to go for safely storing data, CD-R or CD-RW for example, instead of magnetic devices, such as Zip disks and such. To some extent, Apple has driven users towards this by getting rid of magnetic data storage devices and implementing various optical storage drives from DVD-RAM, CD-R and CD-RW and now DVD-R.

    But magnetic data storage device still has some advantage, speed and convenience for example. With Zip drive for example, you can drag and drop files or erase and rewrite quite easily, unlike CD-R or CD-RW. There are softwares that emulate that kind of functionality with CD drives, but they aren't quite the same. I heard about Mt. Rainier and how it is supposed to allow similar functionality in CD-RW drives but I don't see them being used much in work places.

    Although I have not seen it in practice, I read articles that DVD+RW offers that functionality and if it does so, I would really like to see Apple utilize this format. One curious thing is that I read recent iMacs shipped with optical drive that is matter of fact DVD+R, DVD+RW, DVD-R and DVD-RW compatible, yet it is limited only to DVD-R functionality. I wonder what is holding them back if DVD+RW provides such convenience as far as data storage is concerned, ability to drag and drop, using it like old floppy drive.

    Another interesting news that caught my attention is Sony's new handheld game device that is suppose arrive next year. It is not necessarily the game device that fascinated me, but the fact that it will use something called Universal MiniDisc, a MiniDisc that holds 1.8GB of data. I'm pretty certain that this is latest development in Magneto Optical drive. For those who aren't familiar, it is combination of Magnetic data writing method and optical device. Some what well known device was made by Fujitsu, it resembled 3.5 floppy disk with optical disc inside. I personally used to own Magneto Optical drive which used 3.5 disk that held 640MB of data. It was extremely useful and convenient, it was just like using a floppy and ability to securely hold data was unmatched. But going back to the issue of new MiniDisc that holds 1.8GB of data, years ago they had old MiniDisc for data storage which held little bit over 100MB of data but was extremely slow. It never caught on in the market. But if this new MiniDisc becomes reality, I think they could really push this media as data storage device and Apple could certainly look into this as well. And considering Sony's handheld game device is suppose to have USB 2.0, I'm guessing the performance with this MiniDisc is not bad as well.

    But I also wonder how future of Flash Memory devices will be like. Even though they are convenient in terms of size, they still remain expensive, hold little data, and also very expensive. Perhaps Flash Memory device has much long way to go?
     
  2. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2003
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #2
    About your quote that the iMacs have a DVD-RW & DVD+RW drive I can say that the 800mhz 17" iMacs can rewrite DVD-RW's but only for data. I dont know about +RW.
     
  3. macrumors 65816

    melchior

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2002
    #3
    i don't think DVD+RW has the functionality you want.

    i don't think anything with dvd in the name is going to be a lasting format of data storage. the reason? they are improving and accelerating too fast right now. everyone is waiting for one of the (many) blue-light laser optical storage formats to stake it's place but after that, what will we be waiting for?

    i would say regular Hard Drives are the best way to keep data. but quality drives. (not the cheapest you can find) replace them every 5 years. keep them in a firewire/usb2 enclosure for easy access. simple. but it depends on your application. how much do you worry about reading it later. about keeping media from UV light. how much it costs.
     
  4. macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2002
    #4
    Zip discs, now there's a flash from the past....

    i stopped using them as soon as CD-R became affordable for mass project deployment and backup... and later DVD-R...

    I also found Zip's to be slow when copying lot's of files..... and clients never used to return them..... :rolleyes:

    I have a stack of about 100 Zip's in a box, that haven't been used in about 3 years.... :rolleyes: :p
     
  5. macrumors 65816

    melchior

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2002
    #5
    yeah, i mean, at the time 100mb zip disks were a revolution! i used to keep all my stuff on them! through a parallel port (we all remember those, right?!) it was mighty slow and totally hogged the system resources so you could not use anything.

    i remember when the design company i was working at (i was 15) got their first zip drive in a tower. all they could do it complain about the speed. at the time they were using tape's to transfer work to the printers...

    oh those were the days, deadline rushes, couriers, black Macintosh TV's and lots of network fun!
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Jaykay

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2002
    Location:
    Ireland
    #6
    Re: Future of data storage, DVD+RW, Universal MiniDisc

    Ok, those minidiscs were 140MB and are the same that are being used now. The reason they hold the same amount of music as a cd is because they use ATRAC compression for the music. In data it only stores 140MB rather than 650MB (or whatever 74 minute cd's are). They are also the same speed as a cd seeing that the data reading method is identical seeing that a minidisc is just a cut up cd.

    just thought i'd say that.
     
  7. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    #7
    May I add that music compressed by ATRAC onto MiniDisk really does sound like the original CD and thus much better than AAC, let alone mp3.
     
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Jaykay

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2002
    Location:
    Ireland
    #8
    Thats because the files are only compressed to 1/5 their size. AAC and MP3 compress them to at the least 1/10. So id say thats pretty good.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    bokdol

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    VA
    #9
    Re: Future of data storage, DVD+RW, Universal MiniDisc


    you would be able to post a link on this new device? i would love to see what this looks like and if it was backward compatible with the old mini's.....
     
  10. macrumors 65816

    yzedf

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2002
    Location:
    Connecticut
    #10
    anything mini-disc (made and owned by Sony) will not be a good idea for Apple. to license the technology would be to costly, not to mention burn SJ up that he had to rely on yet another company for him to "innovate."
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

    Jaykay

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2002
    Location:
    Ireland
    #11
    Re: Re: Future of data storage, DVD+RW, Universal MiniDisc

    I very much doubt if it would be backward compatible seeing that the new ones have such a higher cpacity.
     
  12. Moderator emeritus

    WinterMute

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Location:
    London, England
    #12
    I would imagine the future of mass storage is along the lines of the Blu-ray discs, 150gig+ on a caddy mounted optical disc, it's currently touted as a back-up medium for large media files, but so were the first CD-rom burners.

    Check it out:
    http://www.blu-ray.com/
     

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