In the “old” days we had a term for random access memory that did not lose it’s data contents when power was turned off. Non-volatile RAM…NVRAM.
It was cool stuff then, still is.
Now the the next generation of non-volatile memory is being used in solid state drives (SSD’s)…..and the latest smart devices (cell phones, MP3 players, etc) are taking full advantage.
Apple is once again pushing the envelope and the recently announced Apple MacBook Air comes with 64 GB or 128 GB of “flash memory” for you computer data instead of the traditional, old technology, hard drive.
So far, SSD’s come in packages up to about 256 GB, but, I”m sure that will be increasing rapidly, as prices of memory come down.
The benefits of SSD’s over tradional hard drives, in mind are compelling, here are only a few:
1. NO moving parts. The traditional hard drive is a mechanically complex device manufactured to very tight tolerance. One thing goes wrong and the drive can stop working.
2. Lower power consumption. Longer battery life, less energy used (multiply that by millions and millions and millions of devices and you are talking about a significant impact on the environment).
3. Faster access times. Solid state is ALWAYS faster than mechanical. By a mile (speaking in electron terms). You computer will be much faster. And….no need to defrag you hard drive anymore. Electrons are just so fast, it does not really matter where they come from on the drive. The old hard drive read head cared….a lot.
4. Smaller form factor. SSD’s of the future can be smaller than tiny and hold gobs of data. Again, the world will be changed…hopefully for the better.
One day VERY soon your computer will have NO moving parts. And this will be a good thing.
BUT…keep a backup…you never can be safe enough.
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