Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Design Ideas: The Xpandable Hard-Disks

I just thought the idea of having to buy a new hard disk every time the old one goes into 'scarce mode' is something that could be rethought. It doesn't help too that with improvements in technology, what used to cost $200 can now be obtained at half that price a year later. This is where the inspiration for the expandable hard disk gets into the picture.

The idea here is to re-look at how and why is there a need for one to expand their hard disk capacity. Possible reasons are the regular increase in storage and backup demands, and perhaps just having a better way of organizing data. But the troublesome part about having new disk spaces is the need to firstly format them, and then copy over stuffs to the new (and usually higher capacity) disks, and then wondering what to do with the old ones.

And this is where my idea for an expandable hard disk is worth looking at. I partly got my inspiration from reading about a model of Nikon DSLR that is able to handle 2 SD cards at one go. The neat and cool thing about this is that you can actually program it to either:

  • Use the second SD card if the first one is full
  • Use the second SD card to store exactly the same picture files as the first one
  • or...Use the second SD card to store another format of the same picture, e.g. RAW format in one, and the usual JPEG in another
I thought since this 'intelligence' is something already available, we can include this functionality into my expendable hard disk designs. Here's some sketches that I did while in one of the meeting yesterday.

Picture 1: Overall ideation. I first started off with a re-ideation
of the basic hard disk design,
seen on the top left of the sketch
Picture 2: Close up of the initial re-ideation of a typical hard-disk
Picture 3: Close up view of an initial expendable design idea,
inspired by jigsaw puzzles
Picture 3: Close up of the final configuration.
Whether vertical or horizontal, it depends on the users.
Numbering or customizing the different hard disks either through
numbering or using different colour could be a good way to cosmeticize
the whole hard-disk usage experience
Note that all sketches and ideas are the copyright of Irfan Darian.

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