The cult of memory

by Robin Harris on Friday, 11 March, 2016

Persistent digital storage is an absolute requirement for a persisting digital civilization – and I remain concerned that with the exception of M-disc we don’t have digital media with a 500 year life. But I also take a broader view of storage, including that which we carry around in our heads, which has way more capacity than we usually credit ourselves with.

Storage ≠ memory
That’s why I found this essay in The Guardian, The cult of memory interesting and relevant. Now that Google has been tasked with “forgetting” it is only a matter of time before the rest of our digital infrastructure has to move beyond mere storage to a pliable and alterable, memory.

A key quote from the essay, summing up the dilemma:

. . . remembrance may be the ally of justice, but it is no reliable friend to peace, whereas forgetting can be.

The StorageMojo take
I often wonder about my own memory: why can I remember details of the RA81 disk drive from 30+ years ago and not the name of the pretty blonde who called me by name at a bar last week? Where are my memory’s priorities?

The nascent storage analytics market – think Qumulo and DataGravity is going to have to respond to this. Not next week, but certainly within the next decade. The default position – keep everything forever – is not sustainable or – from a legal perspective at least – wise.

Courteous comments welcome, of course.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Ernst Lopes Cardozo March 12, 2016 at 8:48 am

Thanks, interesting read.

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