Let's assume you even get that far.
What about the physical layout of data on the drive? The filesystem? The file formats?
That's not even all of it, and there is just so, so much that would be incomprehensible to a single individual, however intelligent.
It's truly incredible how we've been able to combine years and years of knowledge into something most humans would just take for granted.
“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” -Arthur C. Clarke
I remember reading about a project that started with instructions on how to build a stage 1 instrument (a microscope, IIRC) that allows you to read the instructions to build a stage 2 instrument that allows you to read the instructions to build a stage 3 instrument, etc. but cannot find it.
It's fun to dream!
It's not M-Discs fault of course, I just have too much data...
Of course, that means its overall capacity is many orders of magnitude less than the hard drive you describe.
I think equally as interesting an experiment would be to imagine if an alien race found this drive, instead of a future human.
I imagine, to them, it would be like a modern day auto mechanic admiring all of the analog wonders of an antique car from the 1950's. Even though they may have no experience with the technology they are probably able to recognize the roots of the technology and perhaps are able to quickly deduce how it works with simple observation.
How many remote tribes have bread? Obviously generally requires precursors like farming.
> “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” -Arthur C. Clarke
That is precisely the premise of the "science & sorcery" genre or hyper-sci-fi as I like to call it, where relatively primitive people regularly stumble upon ancient technology that they can't hope to comprehend but use it for its incidental effects.
For example a smartphone may be good as a compact light source but not much else, or a hard drive for its shiny sharp discs and magnets.
See the Numenera RPG, set a billion (!) years into Earth's future after several civilizations have risen and collapsed: http://numenera.com
I hope that we have something, something like the seed bank which saves the most important data of the past. Would kind of suck if no one had a SATA in 500 years though
I find it a bit sad and hard to let go of such things. I'm sure I'm not the only one.
Say you have a MEMs device which actually physically flips an atomic sized bit, on or off, like a light switch.
A little gearing machine is what will flip the atomic switches. Or read back its binary data.
Hard drives can be demagnetized, and its controller board will eventually fail. This is its Achilles Heel.
Flash drives can get electrocuted and fried.
Tape is still magnetic, but it separates the reader and writer device, from the actual medium. But it’s too large and cumbersome.
Something like a MEMS storage device, will be fully solid state. Fully enclosed. Electrically neutral. Magnetically neutral. And can last for millions of years. It’s the ultimate time capsule.
Discover a new ability to coat micromachines, to make it resilient to wear and tear.
Or to find a micro lubricant that can be used on MEMS micromachines.
Btw, nice response.
So they certainly havent halved, but the prices are definitely still dropping.
Don't use large SMR drives as OS or software drives, or drives that do a lot of changes when you're above 50% fill capacity on the drive