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March 30, 2012

World Backup Day!

The Powers that Be have deemed that March 31, is World Backup Day, and while one can be cynical that this is all just a plot to make you purchase backup services and hard drives, there is no doubt whatsoever that it is the perfect opportunity for geeks and non-geeks everywhere to learn about the importance of data backup!

Did you hear me... BACK UP YOUR DATA!!!

Your data includes everything you do with your computer and smart phone and tablet.... contacts, all your photos, all those settings on your computer you took years to finesse, and those special folders you keep tucked away!

Here's what we do at Geek Culture Headquarters. We back up via OS X's Time Machine to a local drive. We also use the mighty SuperDuper to backup to that local drive and also an awesome ioSafe's Disaster Proof drive. Then we use some great Cloud services, like Dropbox, iCloud, and CrashPlan to back up all of our precious stuff offsite. It may sound like overkill, but believe me, it's not. When the time comes that you lose precious data in a crash or accident, you will be one happy geek to get it back.

I mentioned CrashPlan a few second ago, it's a great backup service with a ton of options, that's actually very simple and very affordable too. We checked out and used several of these kinds of services before deciding that CrashPlan was the one for us. And to get you started, the nice folks at CrashPlan are offering a one year subscription to CrashPlan+ to one of our readers. So check out all the backup solutions I've mentioned, and give the free trials a try. And you can enter the CrashPlan+ giveaway here!

Posted by Snaggy at 07:14 AM

March 25, 2012

Forum Tidbits!

Rhonwyyn wonders about iPad Obsolescence, ... Ashitaka prepares for a 2013 sale, ... GrumpySteen presents X-Ray-ted Flowers... does a double take over Teenage Mutant Ninja Aliens, ... and flaps on about Na na na na na na na na Bat-Fetus!

Posted by Snaggy at 10:41 AM

March 22, 2012

Robots at Kiva!

Posted by Snaggy at 12:19 PM

March 20, 2012

Please be real, please be real!

Crap, it's a hoax.

Posted by Snaggy at 10:43 AM

March 18, 2012


Aurora Sub-storm March 16, 2012 from InFocus Imagery Inc. on Vimeo.

Posted by Snaggy at 12:39 AM

March 14, 2012

Never too late to say....

Happy Pi Day!


As created by resident TTB Jessycat!

Posted by Snaggy at 03:58 PM

Nitrozac painting auction!


Nitrozac has two versions of her Rainbow Apple paintings up for auction on eBay. Only a day or left, so check 'em out and bid!

Posted by Snaggy at 10:38 AM

March 13, 2012

How to Downgrade from the Mountain Lion Developer Preview to Lion

Sure, you love to be bleeding edge when it comes to operating systems, but did you perhaps jump to Mountain Lion too soon? macolyte has the answer for you in 7 easy steps!

(you DO use SuperDuper, right?)

Posted by Snaggy at 12:42 PM

Illuminating Einstein

via Woz!

Posted by Snaggy at 09:46 AM

March 12, 2012

Neil deGrasse Tyson - We Stopped Dreaming

Thanks DoctorWho!

Posted by Snaggy at 09:58 AM

March 10, 2012

Inventor of the video game!

via Felicia Day!

Posted by Snaggy at 01:28 PM

March 09, 2012

Forum Tidbits!

Snaggy hears about JoT on University Challenge!, and writes a review of ioSafe's disaster-proof hard drive (he likes it), ... DerekCurrie loved the Bistards at Work, ... The Famous Druid bids Farewell to The Man Who Designed Everything..., and here's his take on International Women's Day, ... 7seas says Hi!, ... and DoctorWho says nevermind.

Posted by Snaggy at 01:49 PM

March 06, 2012

Stop Joseph Kony

Got 30 minutes to spare? This film and campaign by Invisible Children aims to make Joseph Kony famous, not to celebrate him, but to raise support for his arrest and set a precedent for international justice.

Posted by Snaggy at 03:28 PM

March 05, 2012

ioSafe's Disaster Proof drives!


Ever wish you could have a fireproof and waterproof vault for all your precious data files? Well you can, with one of ioSafe's disaster-proof hard drives.

What about the Cloud?
Wait a sec, isn't offsite backup the hippest thing ever? Absolutely. Backing up to the cloud, using a service like iCloud or one of the many backup programs like CrashPlan, is essential, but so is having a safe and secure local backup. They put it perfectly over at the ioSafe website... "Complementing your existing online backup solution with an ioSafe drive gives you the best of both worlds. Online provides offsite redundancy while an ioSafe drive gives you the real-time backup, fast recovery speeds, privacy, and security life demands on a daily basis." In other words, if you ever did have a catastrophic event, what a pain it would be recovering all your gigabytes of data from the cloud. This is where an ioSafe would really save the day.

ioSafe's sexy lightsWe tested the ioSafe SoloPRO external unit. The unit comes nicely packed and includes a USB cable, an eSATA cord, and a small external power supply. The hard drive is snuggled safe and sound inside a sleek black box with sexy curves, one that somewhat reminds me of a short and stout version of the Monolith from 2001, a Space Odyssey, which is a good thing.

Subtle is better!
Now let me just rant a bit about the current state of most computer accessories. Lights on the front of accessories are necessary so that one knows they are working with a quick glance, however, I can't stand it when an accessory has a bright blue LED staring me in the face all day, flashing and blinking in a dance of distraction. This is where I really appreciate the designers at ioSafe. The SoloPRO solves this problem with a cool laser-cut pattern that covers the LEDs and creates a nice depth effect. The light gets the job done; it lets you know the device is working, but with an effect that is soft and subtle and esthetically pleasing to look at.

Here are the main features of the ioSafe SoloPRO. They are similar to most of the drives that ioSafe offers:
-Fireproof! Most of their drives protect data from loss up to 1550°F for 1/2 hour.

-Waterproof! Protects data from loss up to 10ft for 72 hours, fresh or salt water!

-Data Recovery Service: 1, 3, or 5 year plans are available. The ioSafe Data Recovery Service (DRS) provides a one time use, no questions asked data and hardware recovery service. For any loss, no matter the reason.

-USB 3.0 SuperSpeed: Plug and Play up to 5Gb/s With the latest in USB technology, the USB 3.0 "SuperSpeed" SoloPRO gives you plug and play data transfer up to 5Gb/s - almost 20x faster than USB 2.0.

-eSATA/USB 2.0 Data transfer up to 3Gb/s. With data transfer rates up to 3Gb/s, the eSATA/USB2.0 SoloPRO combines internal drive performance and connectivity with the freedom of having external storage. The eSATA interface also provides plug and play connectivity to servers. With added plug and play USB 2.0 connectivity and data transfer up to 480Mbit/s, you can use your ioSafe with virtually any Mac or PC.

-Theft-resistant: With a built in Kensington security slot and anti-theft tab, securing the ioSafe SoloPRO to any surface is fast and simple and keeps your data protected in the event of a break in. Securing the drive also prevents the drive from moving during a disaster.

You can find all the drool-worthy details at ioSafe's website, they do a great job posting up a ton of info and tech specs on all their products.

There are a couple, both of which are a consequence of the extra protection these drives give you. The ioSafe's size is more like that of a UPS than a contemporary desktop hard drive, or in old school terms, about the size of a large loaf of bread. Depending on the size of your desk, it may be more of a desk-under hard drive than a desktop hard drive. (If you do want a smaller package, they do come is sleek and sexy SSD models, but in most cases, you give up fireproof-ness.)

Our unit, the ioSafe SoloPRO, has a fan on the back to keep it cool. This adds a measure of sound to your geekosphere, and depending on how sensitive you are to extra noise, this may bother you. Again, this issue is helped by keeping it under your desk, or by keeping the drive in different area from where you actually work. I keep mine away from my desk, plugged into our AirPort Extreme Base Station, which also makes the ioSafe drive easily available to all the computers at Geek Culture Headquarters. Or even better, pick up one of their new fan-less ioSafe Solo G3, which uses their FloSafe airflow cooling technology, designed for near-silent operation.

There's some amazing videos on YouTube showing the kind of punishment the ioSafe can take. Here's two that are fun, ... from the Saskatoon and Vancouver fire departments. I've embedded my favorite below. Stay and watch to the end, it's really incredible the punishment this unit can take and still keep your data alive


Which to buy?
ioSafe has a multitude of disaster-proof drives to select from. Check out all the drives on their Solutions page to help decide what kind of protection you need, and to see whether or not the drive will work with your operating system. If you are at all sound sensitive, get a fanless model. Perhaps, if you are feeling particularly calamitous, you'll want the ultimate fireproof, waterproof, crushproof ioSafe Solo Pro SSD, ... which is, as they say "As close to "everythingproof" as it gets."

The Final Word
An ioSafe drive is an awesome addition to any home or office, and will give you that extra piece of mind so you can sleep better at night. If you are considering picking up a backup drive, I'd seriously consider going the extra distance and get yourself an ioSafe.

Posted by Snaggy at 10:28 AM

Thinking different about the pulse of life

A radically new design for the artificial heart...

via Popular Science

Posted by Snaggy at 08:01 AM