Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 23rd Aug 2012 12:48 UTC
In the News "We all know about the gadgets that get showered with constant praise - the icons, the segment leaders, and the game changers. Tech history will never forget the Altair 8800, the Walkman, the BlackBerry, and the iPhone. But people do forget - and quickly - about the devices that failed to change the world: the great ideas doomed by mediocre execution, the gadgets that arrived before the market was really ready, or the technologies that found their stride just as the world was pivoting to something else." I was a heavy user of BeOS, Zip drives, and MiniDisc (I was an MD user up until about 2 years ago). I'm starting to see a pattern here.
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RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510
by Doc Pain on Sat 25th Aug 2012 02:53 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510"
Doc Pain
Member since:

I think the were great, it's just they came too late for some (writable CDs coming) and were too expensive for others.

Prior to affordable CD writers (and putting MO discs aside for a moment), there was also the PD, the phase-change disc. Anyone know them? (I still have approx. 20 discs and three SCSI drives for them.) They were capable of storing 650 MB (the capacity of a CD), but being real RW mediums. Later on, the DVD-RAM arrived, with higher capacity, but with the same concept. Also the form factor and the idea of the cartridge was kept, allowing the disk to be turned around (like with C64 floppy disks for example) and make the other side usable, so 2 x 4.7 GB could be written to a DVD-RAM. Both the PD and the DVD-RAM didn't get much attention, because cheaper technology was already on the rise. But let's talk about durability when we discuss old-fashioned technology in 10 or 20 years, because durability has never been an important issue in home consumer devices which (especially in relation to PCs and mobile devices) seems to be the most important market today.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by MOS6510
by zima on Sat 25th Aug 2012 04:58 in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510"
zima Member since:

The more popular RW media also seem to be using the phase change principle. I did wonder recently if that makes all of them likely to be more long-lasting (than the "R" media based on organic dyes) ...but then I realised I hardly use optical discs by now anyway, so whatever.

And closing the DVD-RAMs into cartridges, at odds with all likely-to-be widespread DVD variants, certainly didn't help their popularity, initially
(because a form without the cartridge did show up - once I bought a fairly standard tray-loading DVD writer, almost identical to its slightly more expensive sibling with DVD-RAM support, firmware of which could be flashed on mine reportedly without issues ...but to me it wasn't worth bothering, finding & buying a DVD-RAM disc; it was probably another thing not really fitting its times - maybe because of HDDs becoming quite large at the same time, people didn't see the need to use optical discs like that)

PS. Also, prior to CD-R, there was using VHS tapes as an archival medium of crazy, then, size ;) (I remember such adapter for the Amiga)

Edited 2012-08-25 05:01 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2