Archive for May, 2009

The ensmallening of spinning media…

May 20, 2009

I remember 5.25″ hard drives. They were around for a surprisingly long time.

I remember “full height” 3.5″ hard drives. (All 3.5″ drives today are about 1″ high. This is, I think, called half height.) I’ve also seen a slimline 3.5″ drive, which was really neat. I think the one I saw was a 2GB SCSI drive, and it was a replacement for a full height 3.5″ drive. Which accentuated the contrast.

I remember 8″ floppies. I never used ’em though. I did use 5.25″ floppies a lot in my Apple ][ clone, and my first PC. (An Amstrad PC1512.)

I reckon 3.5″ hard drives will only be around another couple of years. They’re being attacked by 2.5″ hard drives from below and above, and by 2.5″ SSDs from the side.

That is, all the fast (10K, 15K) hard drives nowadays seem to be 2.5″.

And at the cheap end, 2.5″ hard drives are getting bigger and bigger capacities. I know that 2TB 3.5″ drives exist, but so do 500GB 2.5″ drives. This gap will shrink.

And if that wasn’t enough, there are SSDs, which are all 2.5″, as far as I can tell. Even that form factor is only for backwards compatibility. A new form factor specially for SSDs will appear once rotational media is dead.

I for one welcome our new non-spinning media. (I’m sure there’s a pun in there…)

Soon the only 3.5″ drives about will be 7200rpm SATA drives. These will be for people who want capacity above all else. And the alternative will be SSD: for people who want IOPS and/or a small form factor. And, eventually, SSDs will eat spinning media.

I won’t miss them. Spinning drives will go the way of tape. Indeed, they might only be used as a replacement for tape.

I just wish Seagate and all the other hard drive makers (both of them!) would darn well get into the business of making SSDs and start competing with Intel already. Those X25-Ms and -Es are just too expensive. Delicious, but too expensive and too small. Roll on competition.

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Good gym songs

May 14, 2009

Pretty much anything by the Fine Young Cannibals.

I am a passenger“, Iggy Pop. Great treadmill song.

Songs that make the hairs on my neck stand on end

May 14, 2009

There are a few songs out there that really affect me every time I hear them.

Set fire to the third bar” by Snow Patrol with Martha Wainwright. I didn’t much care for this song (or Snow Patrol, for that matter) until I accidentally saw them on the Jonathan Ross show one evening. Wow. Nicely done.

Inside of you” by Alice Martineau. Beautiful song. Sad, sad, sad.

The King of Hearts“, “Homburg” and “A Whiter Shade of Pale” by Procol Harum. I just like Procol Harum. Exceptional songs.

Baby I love you” by the Ramones. The song is great, but it’s not very neck-tickly … except in the BT Yellow Pages ad. Great ad, great song.

Wuthering Heights” by Kate Bush. Lovely song. Like too many good songs with hard-to-decipher lyrics, if you make the mistake of looking up the words, it subtracts from the song.

Father and Son” by Cat Stevens. What a voice!

Space Oddity” by David Bowie.

She“, Elvis Costello. Notting Hill came >this< close to ruining it for me though.

The closest thing to crazy“, Katie Melua. My wife hates this song ever since I sang the chorus over and over and over again one day while stripping paint off the architrave & skirting in our bedroom. I still like it.

The Partisan“, Leonard Cohen. He uses both notes in this one.

Live it up“, Mental as Anything. From Crocodile Dundee. Who knows why anybody reacts to certain songs?

Extreme Ways“, Moby. The Bourne Films. Nuff said.

Sinnerman“, Nina Simone. I love the clappy bit.

Lots of songs by Pink Floyd make me all sad and maudlin. Especially “Comfortably Numb“.

Unchained Melody“, Righteous Brothers. How can you not love it?

Complainte de la Butte“, Rufus Wainwright.

I used to love her“, the Sawdoctors.

Nothing compares 2U“, Sinead O’Connor.