Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Breaking the Internet with Uploads

It feels like we've been breaking the Internet lately. First, due to the oft-mentioned hard drive blow-up, we've been uploading our entire lives to Mozy for the past 3 weeks. THREE WEEKS. I had no idea we had that much data, but apparently we do, and it takes forever to back up. It should be done today or tomorrow, though, which is pretty exciting. Now, if our house burns down, I'll still have an electronic copy of my to-do lists and debt repayment plan. Yippee!

We would be done with that already, except we paused it over the weekend for a different uploading project. We've been printing our photos with Snapfish for a few years now. They do a good job, they're quick, and it's 9cents per 4x6 print. Even though the shipping ALWAYS ends up to be so much more than I expect, every time I've compared the cost to somewhere else, Snapfish ends up the winner. Especially because we usually prepay credits, which knocks the price down to 8cents/print.

At first, we opted to do the highest resolution upload to Snapfish, but at the rate we were going, it would have taken us another 3 weeks to upload all of our photos. We changed to a faster upload option, which still gave us enough resolution to print enlargements up to 8x10 (and I certainly don't need to see pictures of myself any bigger than that), and finished uploading by Sunday afternoon. THEN, I threw together a photo Christmas card and we uploaded that to Snapfish, too.

So later this week, we should be receiving about 9 pounds of pictures. Did I mention that we printed over 1,000 4x6 prints?

This rambling story does have a point, I swear. Keith and I were marvelling at how many photos we take and print, and how that wouldn't have been possible in the days of actual film. I don't even want to think about how much it would have cost to print that many photos from film—plus the cost of buying the film in the first place. And what about all of the pictures we take that we don't even end up printing? We wanted a picture of my entire family at Eleanor's birthday party, and with two toddlers in the picture I think we took at least 20 shots to make sure one was usable. Can you imagine using almost a whole roll of film at once?

And likewise with the computer files. A lot of them are photos, but not everything. We also store a significant amount of music in iTunes. At this point, most of the albums are ones of which we also own the physical CD, but lately we've done a lot more simply downloading MP3 files. At some point in the not-so-distant future, I imagine that the majority of our music will all be files instead of CDs. Flash drives these days have more memory than the computer I had 10 years ago. Can you imagine if I tried to physically store all of the electronic information that we have? There's no way it would happen. Or if I tried to do by hand all of the things that are accomplished by programs like Word and Photoshop?

Realizing how much digital information we have also makes me realize how much our lives have changed since 20 years ago. I would say that Keith and I have jumped into the digital age with both feet, yet I'm still on the fence about whether it's made our lives better or not. Am I happy about digital photography quality and price? Yes. Am I happy to have constant access to new music, news, and information? Yes.

Is my life any easier? I don't really know. But is that the goal?


Jonathan said...

Oh... I've been running a backup to backblaze for MONTHS - and it's still not finished (partly because I won't let it have the full bandwidth, but still...)

We have multiple hard drive backups here in the house too - but yes, the offline backup is purely for peace of mind.

I have been wondering recently though about just purchasing space through Google Picasa, and ticking off the folders we want kept.

M. Lubbers said...

Hmmm, purchasing space through Google Picasa? I haven't heard about that. I'll ask my other half!:)