Notes on using the Kryoflux DiskTool utility to make archival images of floppy disks.

Some time ago, I found myself using a Kryoflux interface and a couple of old floppy drives that had been kicking around in my workshop for a while to rip disk images of a colleague's floppy disk collection.  It took me a day or two of screwing around to figure out how to use the Kryoflux's software to make it do what I wanted.  Of course, I took notes along the way so that I would have something to refer back to later.  Recently, I decided that it would probably be helpful to people if I put those notes online …

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Saving stuff before it vanishes down the memory hole.

UPDATE - 20170302 - Added Firefox plugin for the Internet Archive.

UPDATE - 20170205 - Added Chrome plugin for the Internet Archive.

Note: This article is aimed at people all across the spectrum of levels of experience with computers.  You might see a lot of stuff you already know; then again, you might learn one or two things that hadn't showed up on your radar yet.  Be patient.

In George Orwell's novel 1984, one of his plot points of the story was something called the Memory Hole. They were slots all over the building in which Winston Smith worked, into which documents which the …

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#datarefuge in the Bay Area - 11 February 2017.

UPDATE: 20170131 - The Eventbrite page for this event has gone live!  Sign up!

I haven't had time to write about #datarefuge yet, in part because people a lot closer to the matter have been doing so, and much better than I could at the moment.  An entire movement has arisen around scientific data being 451'd because it's politically inconvenient, and not many of us know if it's being erased or just shut down.  We also don't know for certain if it's being copied elsewhere for safekeeping so we're doing it ourselves.  To do my part, I've been communicating with some …

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Biodegradable surgical implants and surreptitious DNA archival.

After badly breaking a load-bearing part of your body it's not uncommon for an orthopedic surgeon to install a couple of after-market bits of hardware to hold the bones together while they knit. This usually takes the form of a couple of titanium alloy screws, though plates, rods, and tubes are not unknown. The downside of using something made out of metal to put things back together is that the screw holes left behind after the implants are removed require additional time to heal. Plus, the holes further compromise the structural integrity of the bone until they fill in. In …

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Newborns tested for genetic diseases. Parents surprised.

In the United States, genetic testing of newborns for inherited diseases began quietly sometime in the 1960's; the technology of the time, understandably, was in its infancy so it didn't detect a whole lot. Jump forward a half-decade, and you will find that the practice is still going on, plus it's mandatory in every state, and you might not be aware it's been done. Anna Brown gave birth to a bouncing baby girl a while ago (the article doesn't say when), and was understandably shocked when her pediatrician sat her down to tell her that her daughter Isabel carried a …

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Happy "Oh, gods, I have to go back to work?!" day, everyone.

Wait a minute... ex-president Gerald Ford died?!

Lyssa pointed me at an article that brought up something that never occurred to me - how libraries manage the limited amount of space they have for all of their materials. This is to say, they keep track of how often each book is checked out (much easier to do since card catalogues and patron records went digital in the mid 1990's) and if it isn't touched for longer than a certain time, they either throw the books out (dumpster diving at the local library is how I got most of my books when …

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