It’s National USB Drive Day
(WHTM) — April 5 is National Flash Drive Day. It commemorates New Year’s Day 2000 when the United States issued a patent for the device, opening the door for them to be brought to market.
USB drives, otherwise known as thumb drives, memory sticks, memory sticks, memory sticks, memory sticks and, of course, memory sticks, are the result of the marriage of two technologies: flash memory, a method of storing data on a chip with no moving parts, and the universal service bus, or USB.
The first USB drives sold in the United States in 2000 had eight megabytes of memory. That doesn’t seem like a lot today, but back then it was almost six times the space of the go-to portable storage method, the three-and-a-half-inch, one-point-four-megabyte floppy disk. It didn’t take long for the USB flash drive to surpass the CD, and later the DVD. Most flash drives are now measured in gigabytes; two terabyte hard drives are now on sale and three terabytes are on the horizon.
So how cheap is flash memory? We went to a certain well-known online shopping site and found thirty-two gigabyte USB drives sold in packs of ten for around thirty dollars. That works out to three dollars per drive, or just over nine cents per gigabyte.
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Records have become so cheap that they are sometimes offered in promotions or press kits. Novelty readers fill pages and pages on the internet. You can find USB drives in all shapes and sizes, including, of course, thumbs. Whatever your interests in life, you can find a flash drive that matches your personality.
There are those who predict that the flash drive will be rendered obsolete by cloud storage. In the future, they say, information will be uploaded, saved and uploaded entirely on the Internet. But Internet connections are not always optimal. Cloud providers are known to change or discontinue services. People worry about the security of their information when it floats in the cloud. And some just prefer to have their data at their fingertips. And so on this day, let’s celebrate our ability to carry libraries of information in our pockets or purses.