At the Ignite 2019 conference, Microsoft presented the future of storage solutions. The company has partnered with Warner Bros. To archive and successfully restore the movie “Superman” from 1978 on a glass the size of a drinking glass.
The new storage solution measures 75 x 75 x 2 mm and is part of Microsoft’s ambitious Project Silica.
As part of the Silica project, Microsoft Research builds on recent insights in the field of laser optics and artificial intelligence to store data on a glass (quartz). “A laser encodes the data in the glass by creating nanoscale three-dimensional network layers and deformations at different depths and angles Machine learning algorithms read data by decoding images and patterns produced when polarized light shines through the glass. Microsoft said in a blog.
According to Microsoft, quartz glass can survive cooking in boiling water and even in the oven or in the microwave. Glass can withstand other hostile environments such as demagnetization or flooding. The company said the new storage solution ensures longer-term archive security.
Working with Warner Bros, Microsoft announced that the studio had asked the company to rely on new technologies to secure its extensive library of films such as radio shows, animated short films, and sitcoms.
The studio was looking for a storage solution that could withstand floods or solar flares and did not require a lot of maintenance, such as: B. temperature management or regular refreshment.
“Storing glass can potentially be a cheaper option as you write the data on the glass once – femtosecond lasers – those that emit ultrashort optical pulses, commonly used in LASIK surgery – are constantly changing the structure of the glass the data will be preserved for centuries, “added Microsoft.
The company also noted that quartz glass does not require air conditioning to keep the material at a preset temperature, or for devices that constantly draw moisture from the air. According to Microsoft, the solution can help reduce the environmental footprint.
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