Sunday, June 7, 2009

Hiatus Backup

I'm a big believer in backing up, having a backup. A backup plan, a backup of files, having my back up when I'm mad, everything. And backups of backups, to tell you the truth. Because you can never be too careful.

I think I got some of this urge to backup everything when I was in school. It was a very sour feeling to give the teacher the only copy of your homework, only to have her tell me two weeks later that she didn't get it. That's when a backup would've come in handy, and I should've had one, since all my teachers were complete incompetents.

Anyway, whatever it is these days, if it's possible and feasible to have a backup, I will have one, two, three, or more. If they put me in charge of the Library of Congress it'd have to be three times as big as it is, just to store all the extra copies.

I remember as a teenager being deathly afraid that my favorite artists' songs could be lost to civilization if they didn't have them on albums as well as singles. The thing was that singles were in the store for less than a month but an album could be there forever. My own little collection, as far as I knew, would exist as the last backup if they found that certain songs had vanished.

With computer files, how often, especially when we had just floppy disks, have I duplicated files. And you needed to with floppy disks, since about 90% of the time they were defective. Hard drives these days are a lot more reliable -- but even then I know that eventually they're going to fail. It's good to have everything on at least two hard drives, then also at least one copy on a CD or DVD. Then if one hard drive goes bad, as it eventually will, there's a chance the other will work good enough to copy everything over to a new hard drive. And if both fail, at least you have the DVD. If everything fails, then you'll know you should've had other backups.

When I took this hiatus, I didn't know how long it was going to be. But I might have foreseen it, that if I wanted a really good break, it'd be better to triple the days that were likely. Then if I wasn't rested up sufficiently, say, from three weeks off, I'd have another six weeks on top of that to make sure the job was done.

Certain things it's not feasible to back up. Like I don't have a couple extra cars in case the one goes bad, although I'd like to. And if we're having hamburgers I don't make extras in case the first ones fall into the charcoal. I can't live my life like that ... entirely.

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