Thursday, May 21, 2009

A Lifetime of Home Movies On One DVD?

Several years ago I inherited a box of home movies that my grandparents shot. I scurried over to Ebay and picked up an old Kodak projector that could show them. It was exciting to see images flickering on the screen that I hadn't seen for decades.

But practicality dictated that they be converted to an updated format that could be more easily viewed. Back then it was a VHS tape, and that conversion was VERY expensive!

But today the VHS tape has already lost some of it's quality, and so the next step is to get them digitized. But even then it would take many DVDs to hold the dozens of hours of footage.

Well, hope may be on the horizon: the Nature journal has just reported that researchers have developed a new optical recording method that could make it possible for new data discs to hold 300 times the storage capacity as a standard DVD.

The new "five-dimensional" recording could find it's way to the commercial market offering us 1.6 terabytes (not mega, not Giga, but Tera!) of storage space on one DVD.

Read more about what researchers are up to at the Swinburne University of Technology in Australia.


Antje Wilsch said...

Great, but the main problem? Those can be lost or destroyed. You must digitize and back up online (outside your home)....

It's what we're yelling about - too many fires, floods, damages, loss, etc. to these precious memories :(

Lisa Louise Cooke said...

Yes, I agree. The idea here is that a DVD like this would offer greater ease of viewing and sharing. Preservation is definitely a different ball of wax.