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Thursday, July 21, 2005

Toys for the well equipped physicist

Had an interesting conversation with a moderately senior person at a large federal agency which provides funding for some of the physical sciences...

Apparently they, or at least some fraction of the agency people, have determined what many scientists have realised for a year or two: the most efficient way to transport medium amounts of data (10s of Gb) is with a high end iPod!
So said agency is buying 60Gb iPods by the bucketloads, and it is at least implicit that a well thought out rationale for compact portable data storage devices would permit purchase of iPods on grants (I got mine privately... didn't think any National Agency would tolerate me buying one as a data device, so that is a secondary use. One of the pains of being a theorist).
But check with your local Research Office before doing anything drastic.
And, as he said, you can also carry all your music with you.

The iPods really are perfect for this (for serious data, you need RAIDs or boxes of normal hard drives; for small amounts, memory sticks on USB interfaces and DVDs are fine); they are light, tough, small, have a firedrive connector and software to manage data, and if you turn off the auto-synch iTunes option they act as a normal hard drive. Plus you get the calendar, address book etc.

And, most physical scientists have been buying PowerBooks and G5 desktops as fast as they can get grants for them so iPod data drives fit into the whole data processing scheme for a lot of people.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Brad Holden said...

You know, I have tried this arguement, but Garth ain't goin' for it....

10:19 PM  
Blogger Steinn said...

Man, that's like way harsh. Garth should buy you one.

12:27 AM  

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