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Reinventing Disk Drives

October 30th, 2006 · No Comments

Robert Cringely writes about the venture he is involved in:

Two old friends of mine, Anil Nigam and Jim White, and their company, Antek Peripherals, Inc., had been working for years on technology for a sort of hyper-floppy drive using metal foil for the recording medium. At the time they were aiming their work toward digital cameras, but I asked if the same technology could be used in a non-removable form inside a computer disk drive? And if it could be used that way, what would be the effect on price, performance, reliability, and energy consumption? The answers were stunning: they could design new families of disk drives that held up to three times as much data in the same space, were more reliable, actually cheaper to build, and used 70-95 percent less energy to run than the current state of the art.

For a data center operator, simply swapping disk drives could increase storage by three times while decreasing total energy consumption by a third. This is a huge attraction for big businesses and big hosting companies, not just because it lowers their electric bills but because it may mean they can avoid building more data centers entirely.

Tags: Emerging Technologies

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