Recording data to a strand of wire? AND Upcoming PBS special on bit rot

From: Charles E. Fox <>
Date: Thu Jan 15 09:55:00 1998

At 03:18 PM 1/14/98 -0500, you wrote:
>These two threads just bumped together in my head. Has anybody got
>an idea of how long data should last on wire? It can't have the same
>problem with oxide coating that tapes do - the main problem might be
>to keep any oxide coating from developing. :-) Are the early wire
>recordings still readable?
>Maybe CDROMs beat wire in resisting rust, even if they are still not
>quite perfect on that count. Still, something about the idea of using
>such an old storage medium appeals to me.
>Anyone want to try running some fine ferrous wire through an old
>cassette (or even reel-to-reel) recorder, and see if the result is
>readable? Given Allison's warning about head-wear, I wouldn't try
>it on my favorite stereo system.
>Just what we need, another incompatible storage medium. :-)
> Cheers,
> Bill.
        The wire recorder head has a deep groove as a guide, as well as a shuttle
to wind the wire evenly on the spools. The quality is bad, the wire breaks
easily, (I once found myself with a glob of wire about the size and shape
of a hornets' nest when it broke while rewinding!) and is hard to splice.
The procedure was to tie a knot in it then heat to aneal it.
        I have a book here somewhere on how to build your own wire recorder, but
it might take a year or two to find it.

                                                                Charlie Fox
Received on Thu Jan 15 1998 - 09:55:00 GMT

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