The efforts of the United States to contain and destroy the terrorist group known as the Islamic State or ISIL is generating so much data that traditional disk media is being pushed to its limits, requiring new technologies to safely store all that information. Interestingly enough, one new technology being deployed in this fight is as old as time itself – carving information into stone.
Hitachi Data Systems has invented a new type of technology to preserve information on disks inside an infinitely expandable array. This new Hitachi Digital Preservation Platform uses M-DISCs that resist environmental conditions and can theoretically last for more than 1,000 years by permanently holding data inside a rocklike substrate. It’s currently being used in the fight against ISIL and could soon start to branch out into other areas of government that require permanent archiving of important data for all time.
We talked with Kimbry McClure, Hitachi Data Systems Federal Digital Preservation program manager, about the government’s new data preservation platform and the new media evolving, from traditional magnetic disks to Blu-rays to M-DISCs made of rock that can still be read 1,000 years in the future.