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1TB microSD cards (theverge.com)
171 points by jbegley 24 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 171 comments

One thought experiment that blew my mind even with the first generation of solid state digital storage.

Imagine an uncompressed image large enough to fill the card, at the size where you can make out every pixel, like 1mm pitch. Then imagine how small each pixel would be if you shrank it down to the size of the chip.

For 1 bit monochrome, 1TB is 2828427 x 2828427. At 1mm pitch, that's is 3 square miles. Imagine shrinking that down to 5mm.

(Edit in response to replies. This example is purposefully simplistic to demonstrate the point about shrinking pixels. A real photo wouldn't be monochrome, or 1-bit depth, or have a dot pitch of 1mm, or be uncompressed, or, for that matter, be 3 square miles big. I mean, who has that much ink?)

Edit 2: For a 2MB Compact Flash card from 1990s the equivalent is 16 square metres. That's still a lot of pixels to squeeze into such a tiny package.

To visualize chip density my go-to used to be thread count on bedding sheets.

For 400 thread count sheets (which means 200 widthwise, 200 lengthwise threads per square inch), that 1990s compact flash card would be about 1.6ft squared. You could sort of imagine a tape-out of that complexity being shrunk down through projection.

Now at these densities it is no longer holding up well. 1TB would be a sheet that was about 1100ft x 1100ft. The tape-out itself seems like it would have to be sized to already be the after-shrunk-down version of 1990's tape-outs.

I have some TIF files that are about that size uncompressed. They are 50cm resolution lidar images of England.

Mind sharing those...

No kidding. I'd love to have copies of that data, hah.

We'll soon be talking about terrabytes, not terabytes :-)

Just an observation: 1mm pitch is awful.

Always? If I'm standing 10 metres away, I don't think it would be too bad. Even at 1 metre away it would be fine.

With images as large as the OP is talking about, at typical viewing distances pitch substantially larger than 1mm would be just fine.

Yes, 0.1mm would be much better, that's 254 DPI. You'd also want 24 bits (3 bytes) per pixel instead of 1 bit. That gives you 0.43x0.43 miles, which is still mighty impressive.

a follow up thought experiment:

how long to walk that distance, VS how long to read the image from the SD card......


walking the perimeter (aprox 2 miles): aprox 30min

reading 1tb (assuming sustained speed of 20mb/sec): 14.5hrs

next: consider WRITE speed...

> Of the two cards, Western Digital is claiming a performance advantage by citing up to 160MB/s read speed

so, 1h 44 minutes, which is not that bad

That is assuredly their best-case-scenario "burst" speed.

The sd cards I have always list some performance like "up to 80mb/sec" but never seem to get close in reality.

I agree with you that 3/762 of an inch would be much better pitch, as that works out to be around 700 x 700 metres ( 49 hectares).

Or head towards 72 DPI and get document quality resolution over a square mile.

72 DPI, document quality?

Ahh, the days before "retina displays", yes.


72 DPI hasn't been current since well before retina displays, you might have to go all the way back to the original Macintosh. Even an old 14" 1024x768 display was 91 DPI.

Awful for what?

When intuitively visualising the number of pixels in a terrabyte I think it's quite good.

When you're trying to leverage your intuitive understanding of photos, using such a low DPI will screw up that intuition and damage the accuracy. 1mm black and white is basically a QR code.

I prefer to visualize things at a reasonable density. Using boring software and a boring printer, adding in redundancy and still using very visible dots[1], you can fit over 7000 bits per square cm instead of 100.

That old 2MB card turns out to only be worth 4 sheets of paper. 1TB remains enormous, but going from 3 square miles down to .1 square kilometers helps to bring things closer to understandable. With this new density it's 25 acres or 17 football fields.

Considering the flash layers is also useful to my intuition. That old CF card is four pieces of paper next to each other. This new card is a box 32 meters / 105 feet on each side, filled edge to edge with densely printed dots on paper stacked 96 sheets deep. I can actually visualize that room / yard. I can visualize the dots on a sheet of paper. I cannot visualize a square mile at human scale.

[1] http://www.extremetech.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/extrem...

I was thinking purely about the physical size of a single bit. I feel like I can personally interact with a 1mm object. Anything smaller gets in the way of the physical intuition. I wasn't actually thinking about photos at all.

Anyway, thanks for your perspective! I think the conclusion is the same -- we've come a long way from the internal combution engine.

It really is incredible how much storage you can fit in such a tiny volume. However, I think the read/write speeds are now the bottleneck on these devices. They seem to all cap out at around 100MB/s (maybe a little more if you get a premium card), which isn't very fast when your device have 1TB of storage.

I'm looking forward to SD Express https://www.extremetech.com/mobile/286390-sd-association-ann... which aims to solve this issue.

That depends on your use-case.

The typical use for a microSD card is to store media (photos, audio, short video clips), and if you add it gradually and consume it from a managed media library, you'll have smooth sailing until you one day decide to export it or back it up and find that it takes 2.5 hours to transfer everything, assuming you don't get thermally throttled!

Even though it takes even longer, I've used rsync with bandwidth limiting to get around thermal issues during large reads.

How do you know that rsync with throttling options is faster than the thermal throttling (designed by the manufacturer)?

I don't, but it seemed to work. YMMV.

What are people even doing that they need more than 100MB/s? I can't see myself ever needing more than that for personal use. Even if you need to read or write the whole thing (which I've essentially never had to do for any storage device), it'd take less than 3 hours to do, which isn't very long

The problem is the speed of non-sequential writes and reads. Writes can fall down to Kb/s in some cases, due to the way flash storage works and onboard controllers, that are optimised for sequential loads. So can't use them as a cheap HDD upgrade options.

Agreed. I have tried to supplement a primary drive that is too small and I/O is definitely the bottleneck. So much so that you can't really watch HD video straight from an SD card because it will drop frames or cause other issues due to slow throughput.

So now SD cards get DMA. Fun!

And easily lost.

You could aggregate these in a credit card sized device with a SATA adapter and put what, 20TB ina 2.5” form factor?

Wow. That's almost exactly what I was looking for last week.

I have an old machine I'd like to turn into a WORM server, but I want it to be silent and would rather re-use a bunch of old memory cards than spend money on new storage.

All I could find was a device that put two MicrSD cards into a single SD card. This is even better.

I'd buy it if there was a USB version, since the computer I want to re-use only has USB ports.

Just in case you thought it might be a good idea to order that aliexpress thing, it's terrible. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3frnBoqqI_Q

There's nothing wrong with the adapter per se, it's just that MicroSD cards have terrible random I/O performance.

Not just performance. Reliability and data loss are also bad. All of these adapters do raid-0, which means any one card failure (very common, I have seen it a lot in my personal devices) will damage the volume.

As I have a lot of odd SD cards unused in drawers I would be more interested in these adapters if they exposed every card as its own drive so I could do ZFS, or if they did "real" raid.

I was thinking it would be cool as a small NAS with a mirror. I want to put my movies and photos on it, and having a huge mirror is very useful for that type of workload. I could drive it with a cheap ARM device, which should allow me to stream a 4k video over the network, provided my network is the bottleneck.

So yeah, I'm very much interested in this device.

Why not just use an actual 2.5" SSD instead of a bunch of SD cards in a terrible quality adapter?

At least with the SSD, you only have one microcontroller doing god-knows-what to hide the horrific reality of flash storage, vs 10 SD card microcontrollers and one on the adapter board, which are all probably even worse.

good lord he's unwatchable. skip to 7:00 for something somewhat real.

Yes, he is hard to watch and they have useful information in their reviews. It's hard.

I'd be wary of this unless you're planning on multiple levels of redundancy. Those old cards (at least the ones I've collected from phones over the years) are just so poor that you can't rely on them for much.

WORM is a slightly less scary, but I still wouldn't trust them without being able to handle failure of 50% of the cards.

There are extremely tiny and cheap micro sd card USB adapters, basically just the size of the card. Stay away from generic ones though. Lexar and SanDisk make good USB 3 compatible ones, and are quite reliable.

Don't get Kingston, like this one, they seem to break leaving half the thing inside the USB port way too often in my experience :


My experience with SanDisk has been mediocre. I've multiple microSD card failures in GoPros and RaspberryPis. Their microSD to SD adapters are the absolute worst and their cards, an only theirs, will continuously dismount and remount every 30 seconds or so if left idle in my laptop.

Sony has let me down as well, their cards have either poor or no wear leveling and will die in a matter of weeks when used in a GoPro. Every single one I bought has died inside of a year.

The longest lived microSD card I currently have is from Lexar and I recently bought some Samsung cards to see how they'll do.

The better-known brands like Sandisk and Sony have a ton of counterfeit clones in circulation. Some of the problems you are experiencing might well be due to that.

Lexar is a less-known brand, less likely to be used by counterfeiters.

My personal record is an 11 year old 1 GB Lexar that's even been thrown into the washing machine by mistake a couple times. Still in use. I find these things extremely resilient in general, no issues with SanDisk at all for me.

Lexar recently changed hands, so it will be interesting to see if their reliability remains good.

I refuse to buy SanDisk. Have had multiple microSD and USB flash drives from them that are permanently stuck as Read-Only. According to them, it is a common manufacturing error in their process.

Thanks for the suggestion. But my intent was to create a 1TB flash storage device from a bunch of old flash I have lying around.

If you don't care about reliability or read/write speeds, sure.

But for just $218 USD you can have a brand new 1 TB USB 3.1 Portable SSD that does sequential reads/writes at 400 megabytes per second.

Trying to write a terabyte at two or even ten megabytes per second would be excruciating.

Trying to write a terabyte at two or even ten megabytes per second would be excruciating.

As noted above, this would be WORM

But for just $218 USD

I'd rather spend $218 on my family and re-use the flash I have lying around instead of dumping it in a landfill.

You could put this into a 2.5" external enclosure with a usb 3.0 port.

Why not buy a 2.5" SSD in the first place? It will be cheaper, faster, and more reliable.

Then throw btrfs on it, and you have a sure-fire recipe for data corruption!

Linus Tech Tips did a video on one of those things:


tldr: it seems to work as advertised but he can't find a valid use case for it.

well if you already have the SD cards like GP said...

> You can use 1 , 2 , 4 , 8 ,10 Micro SD Cards at one time. Do not support 3/5/7/9 Micro SD cards together.

I don't know why but I found this note in the description really amusing.

Odd number bad, unless you number 1!

And no mention of 6.

Because it's the number of the devil. Obviously. /s

Isn't that thing really really dangerous? It does use Raid 0 (ie, no redundancy) on one of the fastest wearing media out there. Unless I missed some recent development, SD cards are a lot more subject to wearing than SSD drives, therefore any use of them to build a disk with striping would be just crazy.

Love that this reply includes a link to exactly the device imagined for sale for $33.

In this case 10 mSD slots, single sided.

So you could have a slow $5000 10TB flash drive.

That is an impressively mad product.

A 15TB 2.5" SSD (MZILT15THMLA) is ~$6000, or $12000 for the 30TB (MZILT30THMLA), both at $400/TB. 10 of these cards are $4500 for 10TB at $450/TB. If you pay that much on storage you'll probably want something that offers you more capacity, performance, and reliability then a multi-microSD setup.

[updated to correct pricing and calculation based on observation made by the fellow commenter below]

I'd never trust a single 15TB device though, so would need to consider the cost of multiples of them in my VFM calculations.

Then again even 1Tb devices make me nervous due to the amount of time it can take to rebuild your redundancy level after replacing iffy units, and might insist on straight mirrors (R10) rather than something more space efficient like R5 to try keep rebuild time down as low as possible.

Where does one buy a 20TB SD at $2000 ? Asking for a friend. The closest I found was this 16TB SSD at 6500 GBP: https://www.span.com/product/Samsung-Enterprise-SSD-PM1643-M... (or double that for the 30TB model).

I'm not sure about single ssds, but many consumer SATA drives are hovering around 125~150$ per TB, which is still more then 2000$ but it's closer...

I wonder what these are for ? Is it for devices with limited hardware (single 2.5" slot), or is it because it is sometimes the cheapest way to accelerate a system (hard to beleive) ?

You could, but with the failure rate of non-industrial grade microSD cards I would not rely on these.

I would love to see multi-terabyte servers in a netbook form-factor.

Wish I could fill up the world's knowledge in 1TB and put it in a low cost tablet and deploy it to a billion underprivileged people in their language to spark the next Einstein, along with millions of other educated people who were able to improve their lives through data

Sounds about as popular as reading encyclopedias for fun. I bet I'd be hard pressed to find one person who genuinely reads Wikipedia as a hobby outside of the lone HNer who will claim "but I do."

I just don't think underprivileged people are so desperate for entertainment that they'll browse a 1TB SD card for morsels of wisdom.

Unless you meant you're going to pack it full of movies, music, and games, which actually sounds interesting.

Anecdotally I know several people who "get lost" reading Wikipedia after looking up something on a whim, myself included. I find this comment a bit odd on a site people browse to stay informed on tech or tech-near subjects, which is not just movies and videogames and the like.

Compare HN to a 1TB SD card data dump.

I don't see the parallels.

HN is basically current events social media where people even admit they read the comments instead of TFA. And I think that getting lost on Wikipedia every few weeks is a far cry from browsing old shit on a 1TB SD card for fun in your ramshackle hovel with the family Android tablet.

To me it kinda comes off as the hilarious "wow, those poor people must be so bored watching their paint dry. Maybe I can interest them in something nobody does" wrapped up in some feel good idea about sharing knowledge.

Lot's of people still go to the library, and many of them still check out books a century or more old.

A 1TB dump is not about expecting people to read all of it, it would be about getting a broad enough section of knowledge that the chances of a decent subset of it being of interest to a decent number of people.

And if the purpose is to "spark the next Einstein" as the comment suggested, it doesn't matter if 99% of them ends up being used for games, or sold, or used for all kinds of other things, if a tiny portion triggers an interest in learning and provides a good starting point.

I call them "wikiwalks".

And I call an excessively tangential session a "wikiwalkabout", after the Australian walkabout tradition introduced to Americans by "Crocodile Dundee", or, more recently--the Locke character from "Lost". And boy, did that show have a letdown denoument. But I did like the colossus foot in the later episodes, because it reminded me of "Ozymandias", by P.B. Shelley. And did you know that he wrote that as his shot in a poetry duel with another poet--Horace Smith? (I guess he won, right?) Anyway, they picked that as a topic to honor a new museum exhibit of the Younger Memnon statue of Rameses II. Those British museum-goers were just mad for importing cultural artifacts from distant lands and never sending them back. Like the Elgin Marbles, from Greece. And when I think about Britain and Greece, I can't help thinking about their palace guards--Greece with their poofy-footed Evzones and Britain with their Beefeaters. And one of those Beefeaters is the Ravenmaster of the Tower of London--literally in charge of the welfare of the tower ravens. One of whom is apparently named Merlina, and is allowed additional latitude in how far she may fly, because she always comes back. And speaking of ravens and 19th-century poets, boy was Edgar Allen Poe a gothy li'l guy. He had a lot of inspirational company, though. Including Mary Shelley, wife of the aforementioned P.B., who won a 3-way ghost story duel between herself, her husband, and Lord Byron, who only managed to invent the vampire romance genre. So between the two of them and ol' Rameses II, we're almost all primed to scare the crap out of Laurel and Hardy with Universal Pictures monster movie staples: Frankenstein's monster, Dracula, and the Mummy. But we still need the Wolfman....

And hopefully you see how it works now. Before wikis existed, there was "Connections", by James Burke.

>the Locke character from "Lost". And boy, did that show have a letdown denoument.

Yep, that show was a poster-child for the phenomenon called "jumping the shark".

"Connections" is one of the best TV shows I've ever seen (I have it on DVD) and I'm barely even an adult.

Agreed. I thought it was common knowledge ( from commenting with others around me ) that Wikipedia is a rabbit hole hard to escape sometimes.

If you added it up I reckon Wikipedia accounts maybe 10% of my total screen usage time.

Whenever I see or hear something I don't know about I go look it up on Wikipedia.

Agreed, I've done this too. It's not something I do every day by any means, but I certainly have gone down Wikipedia rabbit-holes from time to time.

>I bet I'd be hard pressed to find one person who genuinely reads Wikipedia as a hobby outside of the lone HNer who will claim "but I do."

Sounding off: I was 12 years old, with a dialup connection and a barely functional windows 98 computer, in a shithole town with no future. I got lost reading into the history of video game consoles, and from there, the history of computing and processors in general. I wouldn't have gotten into computers (and therefore, software development and an actual escape from the shithole town) without my limited access to Wikipedia.

What you're missing is that I wasn't looking for entertainment, I was looking for knowledge. Plenty of people seek it out for it's own merits, and I would love if people in other shitholes were able to be introduced to their hobby or passion.

In fact, before wikipedia, we had an actual, 1970s vintage cheapo encyclopedia set, and I read those multiple times. After that, we had Encarta 2000 on CD-ROM. Thank goodness too, because I probably would have moved on to our dictionary from that point

> What you're missing is that I wasn't looking for entertainment, I was looking for knowledge.

These are the exact words that I was looking for. Thank you.

> Sounds about as popular as reading encyclopedias for fun.

As a kid I did this for fun all the time. It was either them or read through the 100s of back issues of Nat Geo that my grand parents had.

Today I easily get lost in wikipedia, and need to make sure I do not waste too much time when I go in looking for a single fact.

I...uh... used to browse print encyclopedias for fun when I was kid. I frequently ponder what I might have learned or accomplished as a kid when I had all the time in the world to go deep on an interest or a skill if I'd had YouTube and Wikipedia back then.

>I frequently ponder what I might have learned or accomplished

I find a lot harder to study on the internet with all its distractions, so I'd guess not much.

True, there are many distractions, but I think I would have learned more guitar and taken on some bigger automotive repairs as a teen if I had access to all of the how-tos I have now.

I have read encyclopedias for fun since I was 5. Still reading something from Wikipedia out of context almost every day.

Encyclopedias (yes, the dusty paper versions) enabled my development; I would be a completely different person if I didn’t have one when I was a child.

Same thing here. I grew up on a mix of encyclopedias and sci-fi.

But I do!! I sometimes get bored and there isn't anything particularly interesting on hn so I open Wikipedia, think of a random thing, and read its article from start to end.

Many people read random Wikipedia articles for fun. I do it all the time, but even your average Joe does this. Random trivia and factoids are super popular in general, hence the large number of TV shows and books about them.

That's not to say that I think giving underprivileged people tablets with Wikipedia is a good idea though.

When I was a kid I had The Dorling Kindersley Visual Encyclopedia. It contained detailed drawings of plants, machines, spacecraft, artistic implements, motorcycles. I browsed that book at random, cover to cover, several times over (it's a 450 page book!). I credit it with being part of my inspiration to build things as a kid, and eventually become an engineer.

When I was in college and grad school, I used to read the mathematica documentation for fun. It's very well written.

I don’t think disappearing down a Wikipedia rabbit hole is as novel or boring as you make it sound.

Oh, good. I was actually looking for that right now. Got derailed looking up something on Wikipedia.

This happened already. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WikiReader

It didn't work. Probably because gadgets aren't the solution to unequal distribution of privilege.

I don't think WikiReader was every "widely distributed". As far as I remember from watching Techmoan's video on the topic, it was a consumer product with no market.

An alternative data point would be https://www.edutopia.org/blog/self-organized-learning-sugata... - the hole in the wall computer that showed giving access to the internet to poor children did have a dramatic effect.

Thank you for pointing this out. Most Hacker News comments are so wrapped up in their ideology--as evidenced by the response which reads your assertion as derisive.

Your derision doesn't include the fact that there is no "the solution" for unequal distribution of privilege.

It's not clear that it "didn't work" either. Does that mean no one benefited from it anywhere ever?

Google assistant or similar limited-AIs are a much more likely future. My kids already have (silly) conversations with google-assistant all the time.

An obvious extension would be google-ai-tutor. Inspired by _Diamond Age_.

I had one, until I accidentally killed it - it was a great gadget. The $99 price point is what killed it, though.

There is evidence that education technology can be effective, but perhaps the global community should be focussing on the hundreds of millions of children in school but not learning: https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2018/feb/02/h...

Software for getting children reading - in their own language first - is a great first step.

See the work being done by the Global Learning XPRIZE: https://www.xprize.org/prizes/global-learning

If you don't include images, the world's knowledge should be able to fit into a 1TB µSD card; most fandom wikia's + random wikis from the web + wikipedia + wikiquote + wiktionary + wikibooks.

Text compressed well, especially if you have a lot of it and image files usually make up the bulk of any archival effort.

Fun fact: You can download the entire set of articles on Wikipedia. The English set is roughly 25GB in size. At 1TB you could probably store 40 different languages in your tablet. https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Data_dump_torrents#English_W...

This is without images, which makes many articles that much less useful. A full point-in-time snapshot of English Wikipedia, with images, without videos, and with xz compression applied to all data, is on the order of 80 Gb.

This is kind of what non-profit Worldreader does, takes Kindles loaded up with books and ships them to schools in Africa. See https://www.worldreader.org/our-solution/products/blue-box/

You can't just provide information. People also need help to do something with it. Most of us won't become math experts by reading a pile of math books. You also need teachers who help processing the material.

We should rename teachers to catalysts.



> Eschew flamebait. Don't introduce flamewar topics unless you have something genuinely new to say. Avoid unrelated controversies and generic tangents.


The word "unrelated" is awfully subjective. I could, of course, improve at spelling things out, but one never knows how much elementary illustration is necessary.

Of course, no one believes their own words to be flamebait. Makes the rule about as useful as "don't piss on the escalators"--no one who does it will be dissuaded by a sign.

I bought a Raspberry Pi Zero W recently, and while shopping for an SD card for it, I suddenly realized that a decent 64Gb card costs more than Pi itself ($10).

And then I thought about how Pi is actually a rather powerful desktop computer, by the standards of the time not so long ago. It's 1GHz CPU and 512Mb RAM - back in 2000, that would be a rather high-end PC (yes, I'm aware that CPU frequencies across architectures are apples and oranges).

If you think about it in those terms, it's insane how cheap compute has become, even relative to storage.

So... large enough that the most important numbers on the spec sheet are now read speed and write speed.

I was surprised no one said this earlier. These cards are big enough that at the current read/write speeds for SD card they might not be actually usable.

We have SD Express to look forward to [1]. The bus speed of express is 985 MB/s.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SD_card#SD_Express

Is there anyone here that has a use-case for owning one of these at their current market price?

High resolution video cameras would be the first adopters I'd think. 4k out of the camera can be hundreds of GBs an hour and 8k chews up even more.

This was my first thought. I work in video production and we always carry around extra SD cards because our camera chews through them so fast.

We use Sony FS5s and they can fill a 128 GB card in an hour with 4K video.

With my 5d3 raw video I get 24 minutes of 1080p on 128gb. But I have to use a really fast cf card, because the sd cards aren't fast enough. It writes at around 100MB/sec for 14bit raw.


  553GB for an hour of 8k
  88GB for an hour of 4k

Video cameras can be able to shoot at higher bitrates than a post-processed 25fps Blu-ray, just using the same calculator as that site for 60fps you get 164 GB/hr for 4k

Which is about 45MB/second, about half of the published write speed for these 1TB cards.

The SD standards have been moving up the transfer rates. The UHS-III does 624MB/sec. The new SD Express standard will do 985 MB/sec by presenting a PCIe Gen3 or NVMe directly. (Obviously more contacts, but they are backward compatible with the older interfaces.)

They just announced the SD Express interface for microSD cards as well. I'm not sure any products are available for SD Express yet.

They're of limited utility in this application because of poor write speeds. Most high-end 4K cameras use Cfast, XQD, SxS or SATA recording media, because SD cards are a significant bottleneck.

god.. I don't even use 720p more than once a month

If I was going to build a datalogger for work that could log more data for longer (while being away from any network) the $450 would be no problem. Some years ago I was working on a seismic sensor that could have benefited from more flash.

For home use it would be a definite no.

Someone on a long trip with no reliable high speed internet could shoot in raw and never worry about space.

With my camera (Canon 5D Mark III), that's about 26,000 still images. On a busy day, I might take 200 photos. There is no way I would take a hundred day long trip and put all of the photos on a single card and risk losing the whole thing. Even if I could, I would absolutely use multiple smaller cards just to reduce the single point of failure.

"On a busy day, I might take 200 photos. "

I can easily see a pro taking 20000 pictures during a sports weekend or an airshow. I took more than 3000 during an IndyCar day with several races.

Yep. I work for a top motorsports company and our photographers take hundreds of photos in a very short time (we have multiple drivers), leading to many thousands over an entire race weekend.

The images are uploaded immediately and used for classification and analysis via ML.

At the IndyCar race I was shooting from a parking garage roof and there was a guy who took pictures and videos of all cars and streamed them to the team for engineering analysis. this was new to me but makes sense.

What series do you work for if I may ask?

Sorry, I have a habit of making comments and not following up in checking replies.

I work for each NASCAR series, so Cup, Xfinity, and Truck. We also work with ARCA, NHRA, and IMSA but I'm not sure if this particularly level of photography or application will ever make it down to the lower series.

Yeah, I'm not doing action photography, so my numbers tend to be much smaller because I don't need to do a lot of bursts.

I wouldn't trust one card with that amount of pictures. I use several 64 GB cards. That way if one goes bad, not all is lost.

just back it up frequently?

Sure. But why take such a monster card?

so you don't ever have to switch those tiny cards?

i have several which I often switch daily. They don’t take up much space so taking them is not a problem. Really big cards are often more expensive per GB and now you have a single failure point. Even reviewing pictures on the camera is a pain if you have too many.

Obviously this changes if you do 4K or 8k video. There a 1 TB is probably very useful.

of course when talking about storage you don't usually buy the largest capacity available if you are worried about money... same goes with hard-drives... you buy 8TB even if 10TB are available, because they are cheaper by the TB... but that should make 200GB and 512GB sd cards cheaper, at least

No, but the great thing is that prices seem to cascade down for very size when a new size becomes available. These ones put 256gb cards firmly in the affordable category for me.

Maybe something like a dashcam or security camera. Something where more hours of video footage retention is better.

in your phone, to be able to keep a local copy/backup of your family videos, your music, etc...

My thinking is the following people: -> Status symbols, Mobile Phones are the new Cars and mobile stats are the new horsepower, so being able to brag you have a n extra tb of storage over your other colleagues might be a thing. Esp in mobile nations like UK and India

-> Social media is slowly switching to video over still images (greater access to high bandwidth). So people will be taking editing and sharing more video instead of pictures and that increase storage requirements many many times over. I know most people who heavily use social media already find 32gb limiting when what they post most of are images.

-> Gamers, most AAA mobile games require large extra content downloads that are in multiples of gigabytes.

-> Geeks, because 1TB SD cards are quite a technological marvel.

-> Mobile Cinematographers, Laugh now but this will slowly become a thing. Looking at Sony and LG offering more and more bold mobile cinematography devices like the Xperia X1. These phones are able to deliver RAW footage files. Also Nokia's latest five camera flag ship puts out RAW stills that can be 10s of megabytes per image. I see a proliferation on the horizon.

-> Streamers, Mobile networks can be patchy, public wifi sketchy, and corporate internet to restricted so youtube, netflix, and showmax allow people to download movies to watch later. However low amounts of storage capacity currently limit the resolution of of content you can download.

I believe at least two of these use cases will hold true in the near future. But at the current high prices maybe only Geeks will buy them.

This is going to make it a bit harder to report counterfeit SD cards on Amazon. It used to be pretty easy because they often claimed to be 500GB or 1TB, and those capacities just plain didn't exist at all. Now I'll have to make an argument based on capacity and price-point when I find them.

> Now I'll have to make an argument based on capacity and price-point when I find them.

You mean you're reporting them without buying them and testing them, based on what you think the capacity and price-point should be?

> You mean you're reporting them without buying them and testing them, based on what you think the capacity and price-point should be?

Yes. If someone's offering an impossibly too good to be true deal in an area that's rife with data-destroying counterfeiting [1], they do not deserve the benefit of the doubt. This is a very well known and prevalent type of fraud.

Personally, I think Amazon is negligent for not very tightly controlling the vendors that are allowed to sell SD cards on its site. They're not doing enough to keep fraud out of their store.

[1] https://www.eetimes.com/document.asp?doc_id=1326059# (from 2015, capacities have obviously changed since then):

> Tests by the Counterfeit Report found that the cards will work at first, but generally speaking, buyers are purchasing what they think are cards with capacities of 32GB and up. Instead they are getting are cards with 7GB capacity. Counterfeiters simply overwrite the real memory capacity with a false capacity to match any capacity and model they print on the counterfeit packaging and card, Crosby explained. Users can’t determine the actual memory capacity of a counterfeit memory card by simply plugging it into their computer, phone, or camera. When the user hits the limit, the phony card starts overwriting files, which leads to lost data.

> The Counterfeit Report often comes across cards in capacities that don’t exist in any product line, and the cards it purchases and tests that are 32GB and up are usually always fake. The counterfeiters make a great profit on the fake cards, and there’s no consequence.

But reporting them not because their product is impossible, but simply because you think they’re selling it too cheaply?

Seems abusive. I could report my competitors for selling cheaper than I do and hope they get banned.

> But reporting them not because their product is impossible, but simply because you think they’re selling it too cheaply?

I'm talking about stuff like a supposed 1TB generic MicroSD card going for $50, when a legit item would sell for ten times that. Here are some examples:





There's a 99-100% chance these are fake, and I don't have to buy one to tell.

It took two minutes for me to find them, by the way. A company as rich as Amazon should easily be able to pay someone to search for fakes like that full time, and even purchase cards to verify their fakeness.

> Seems abusive. I could report my competitors for selling cheaper than I do and hope they get banned.

Offering these things for sale is abusive, reporting them as fake is a public service.

I can see what you're getting at, but I hope you're not one of these people reporting it as a scam by posting reviews. I think it may actually be against Amazon's terms and conditions to 'review' a product you have not purchased.

What they say is

> [you are] able to review any product on Amazon.co.uk regardless of where you purchased that product

Which implies you must have purchased it somewhere.

> I can see what you're getting at, but I hope you're not one of these people reporting it as a scam by posting reviews. I think it may actually be against Amazon's terms and conditions to 'review' a product you have not purchased.

I don't post reviews like that, but I totally approve of people who do. I'm not going to fret over the precise meaning of Amazon's terms and conditions if doing so means that innocent people will be more likely to be suckered by scammers.

It's perfectly reasonable to do this for egregious cases, such as if somebody is advertising something for 6¢/GB when the cheapest legitimate entry-level products are at 10¢/GB. The market for flash storage devices is efficient enough that it really is possible to know when prices are too good to be true.

Why aren't these tiny cards being used in the 100s in 1U rack systems? Is there no gain from it? Perhaps even for slower medium-term storage?

It would be extremely cost-inefficient, as well as giving poor I/O performance.

$200 to $450 is actually a significantly lower convenience fee than any other level change. 200GB to 400GB is a jump from $36 to $109.

$450 for 1TB. Who else other than spies moving large volumes of data in as tiny item as possible, is going to buy them?

Me in a couple of years. Price will fall to reasonable levels, and then further, as it has for the 200 GB and the 400 GB ones I currently use but certainly did not buy when they just came out.

As mentioned above, people with video cameras.

Relevant xkcd (what if) for this, https://what-if.xkcd.com/31/

Has anyone implemented ipfs with carrier pigeons and bluetooth memory pigeon anklets? Drones could do this, but I like the idea of using pigeons.

Or just WiFi drives on rural buses that could transfer data from stop to stop.

Perhaps I’ve been reading too much post apocalyptic fiction

I think the HAM radio operators have us covered there.

On a serious note if you wanted to play around with "infrastructure breakdown tolerant" stuff, a rtl-sdr is like 30$ on amazon and it's fun to mess around with. You can tune into HAM groups, police radio, the weather, traffic control, etc.

EDIT: Before others mention it, no broadcasting without knowing what you're doing! Listening is perfectly fine, but if you show up on the police scanner they might not be happy....

HAM radio can do this but I like the idea of a wireless postal service hitch hiking on vehicles doing their rounds.

Reuter’s got its start by using carrier pigeons to bridge the gap between two telegram networks.

Has anyone implemented ipfs with carrier pigeons and bluetooth memory pigeon anklets?

Implemented? Not to my knowledge. But there's an old RFC from 1999 for it: https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc2549

It was even updated for IPV6, which means that it's possible to have birds communicate with a more modern protocol than many major ISPs: https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc6214

Introducing the AVID-ITy line of products

As of about a year and a half ago. (Edit: nevermind, I must have been mistaken)

Holy cow. Here I was being impressed by 400GB cards just a few days ago.

Are you failing to distinguish between full size SD cards and microSD, or can you cite a specific retail product from 1.5 years ago?

How does this compare to taking 1024 1GB SD cards and affixing them with tape?

Your method has a few downsides, namely:

* No support for files over 1GB (videos can easily go beyond that on modern cameras)

* Poor access times/latency for anything not on the current card (you have to manually swap it)

* You have to use tape

* Depending on the pricing, I'd be curious but my bet is that 1024 actually decent micro SD cards will cost at least 1$ a piece , and the 1TB uSD is only $449.99, so good luck finding that many cheap, and usable uSD cards.

> No support for files over 1GB (videos can easily go beyond that on modern cameras)

You can combine multiple physical drives into a single logical volume, e.g.:


Inside, that's how those things basically work. NAND stacked on NAND. They probably don't use tape, though.

Depending on the tape, you could end up with some very nasty electrostatic discharge.

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