Filling that big ol’ hole

in technology

One Mister Yarrumk will appreciate the title. For those not in on the joke, all I’ll say is that white holes, black holes and our inability to differentiate between them by measurement of Hawking radiation alone are nature’s own double entendre.

Mandatory crudeness aside I do have a hole in need of filling in regards to the portability and accessibility of my cloud-stored information:

  1. I want to be able to fully access my Dropbox account and it’s contained documents without having to resort to the web interface.
  2. I want to be able to do #1 safely and securely. I want to rest assured that nobody with physical access to a shared machine with have the ability access my Dropbox folder.

With 091 Labs, I do have a partial workaround: I’ve created an 091 Labs Dropbox account. I can drop in work documents (typically a big .tif, .xcf and .png files from panoramas) and pick them up again at home. But I really do not view this being as a permanent solution for my own needs.

Thinking Aloud

Why not just use a USB key?
I lose them. My niece steals, chews on and drools on them. Ten to twenty euros a pop can add up.

Why aren’t you happy with 091 Labs’ Dropbox? It Works.
As I said: This is a workaround. Workarounds should never been seen as anything but a temporary solution to a problem in need of a permanent fix. I’m happy to have given 091 Labs the gift of Dropbox, but I want a better solution for myself.

I have a dread fear of what I call “fracturing”; when I work, I work with one eye to the future. I prefer to keep information in one, single, permanent location, and in recent years I’ve chosen to offload that information to the Web/Cloud, although in turn carries the concern that somebody is going to take a NNEMP device to a backbone server, or Dropbox and Google will suddenly, simultaneously and catastrophically implode, taking all of my information with them.

You scare me. Stranger danger!
My paranoia only runs so deep; should any of the above scenarios come to pass I am certain that I’d have larger concerns. So for now I am content to keep everything in the Cloud for now as I judge the risk of information loss from there to be less than what might occur should I lose or break my Netbook.

Why…why all of this?
Ultimately? Posterity. My dad, my mum, and their families in turn are mostly a mystery to me. They weren’t around; they weren’t discussed. I want to have a body of information about myself – my blog(s) (in database form if needs be), my instant messages, my emails – that I can turn over to my kids, a historian or even somebody sufficiently interested in me that I could say “This is me. This is who I was and who I am.”

Hole. Filler.

Every word above this point was written before about 12pm today. It’s now turning toward 6pm and I am no longer so sure that Dropbox is the right be-all, end-all for me. There are a few very specific features that could solve my current problems that Dropbox simply does not offer – and in the past I’ve simple sought, found and migrated to the service that offers what I need.

This Be The Verse

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