so even with multiple USB-HDDs each would still only has a 3-4 year span regardless of how often you use it right? and burnt dvd, unless of that japanese tien yuden brand are still quite unrealiable, so does that mean the only reliable format that can store data with a guaranteed 10 year archival life-span and accessibility would be digital SD-Cards and solid state/flash memory/cartridges?
around 5 years back i've managed to get my hands on tons of verbatim branded discs, but even with a brand new hitachi burner and reading though the faqs for nero, my discs began to go dead one pile after another in less than 3 years,
it was a copy of an old atari game called yar's revenge that i saw at an old shopping mall for 64cents back then, when i had walked over and picked it up, and as i held it i realized that, along with the pile of old nintendo cartridge on the shelf the data each stored in each these old plastic carts should still be readable if there were plugged into a compatible device, despite having came out over 2 decades ago.
and from then on, i back up a lot of my photos to SD-Cards, and i would have it no other way.
SD-cards and flash memory only have a certain number of write times, so i had to try to keep it minimum until it reaches full capacity, that's when i flip the write protect "lock" nob on the sd-card and place it inside a metal container in the old shelf, never to be taken out again unless in extreme circumstances where my other external copies of the data have become damaged, lost or inaccessible.
so far i've only been able to get photos in there, the camcorder videos just take up way too much space, but i still try to shrink some of them to appropriate quality and squeeze them into another SD-card.
As for interface devices, i have a brand new unopened e-blue universal card reader tucked away inside the same metal container with the small stack of SD-cards.
i simply like SD-cards because of the write protect switch there, speaking from bad experience i had a 2nd generation 20gb hardrive that costed me 400usd back then, a virus got in there and turned all my files into unreadable notepad documents with gibberish names. it reminds me of the days years back of pretending to be a DJ when i was a kid, i ripped out the write-protect plastic of a few recorded cassettes that i think is "worthy enough" to not be recorded over, and the rest i just reuse it until hear over a million voices of myself echoing off and smooth-talking to each otherthough i still ended up stuffing the bottom gap with small paper and recorded them again, but atlesat i know that the next time i ended up pushing down on the darn REC button with the play button again my terrible "broadcast" would still be there ... you know, that kind of protection feature having it is really assuring.
there used to be this old pc covered in complete rust back in school, i remember seeing those huge 4MB magnet tapes with the enclosure and individual fan inside it, it seems that very many of them can still be readable when disassembled and cleaned properly.
though i'm happy to indulge myself in these thoughts; that SD-cards will safeguard my tresured photos for another 10 years to come, i feel that i'm probably being an idiot and missing something here, and that the copy of yars revenge doesn't actually work anymore.
maybe its time for nasa to mine that asteroid and moon rock to make new metal.