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3D Printing A Save Icon?

The way we use technology has evolved exponentially over the years, and even more so since the start of the millennium. But how exactly have things changed for storage, and what does this mean for the future?

Storage is one of the most underrated, yet vitally important, elements of computer usage. In the instances of a complete wipe, or upgrading to a newer model, all the way to more malicious reasons such as computer viruses – or even ransomware, having a backup of your content and data could be the thing that allows you and your business to stay afloat.

We thought it would be fun to look back in the last few decades and see how things have changed for computer storage. So, let’s go for a bit of a nostalgia boost – gone are the days where storage was in the MBs or the GBs, now we’re looking at TB and beyond!


Punch Cards/ Punch Tape

Back in the day (from the beginning of the 19th century until the end), data storage, such as for programming, was “punched” onto physical cards, either by hand or by a machine. The data was then put through a reader, which is how the computer understood, and would execute, what you wanted it to do.

Punch tape was a very similar concept, but on one continuous tape rather than on individual cards.

This method of storage is thankfully, rarely used now. You can only imagine the headache caused by dropping a pile of unmarked cards – or ripping the tape!


Floppy disks

Children these days, who are too young to remember floppy disks, may recognise this storage device as the save icon – a known meme these days is young children thinking “oh cool, you 3D printed a save icon!”. Don’t worry, we don’t need the zimmer frames just yet. Floppy disks fell out of popularity in the early millennium, after first being developed in the 1960s.

At least they still have their existence immortalised thanks to Microsoft. Let’s just hope they bring back Clippy and his tips next…



Not yet totally obsolete! CDs have many uses. Although mostly known for music, CDs give a way of burning and uploading data. The “ROM” in some CD types stands for Read Only Memory, that is, that the data stored on it cannot be edited or removed, but that the computer is only able to “read”.

The downside to CDs is, of course, when they get scratched and become unreadable (or, for music CDs, when they skip your favourite part of the song). Like all good things though, this had to come to an end as our technology improved.



As time goes by, technology gets smaller. USBs are still in use and are handy for easily transporting a lot of data in a small space, because of how easily you’re able to pop them into your bag and plug into your device. The downside to a USB, however, is when you misplace them…

USBs also pose a potential security threat. If there’s a corrupted file on it, it could cause a nightmare for your PC, and burn a hole in your pocket.


Cloud Storage

Now the safest, most convenient way of saving and backing up your data – without the need to carry anything with you! No more worrying about ripping up a card, scratching a CD or losing a USB, everything is saved in cyberspace.

Cloud storage is kept in external buildings and consists of interconnecting servers that talk to one another – but without the need for a physical presence where you are. Most of the things we use in our everyday lives now utilise the Cloud; from YouTube video storage to Microsoft Office documents – and even Wi-fi in restaurants.

The Cloud allows you to access your data at any time, any place and on any device (as long as you have an internet connection). This means that if you suddenly lose the ability to use your laptop, you’re still able to pull out your mobile phone and access exactly what you need. It also offers the added cyber security benefit for if the worst was to happen, and your device was held to ransom; your data can be easily restored, minimising the impact.

A lot has changed in the last few decades, but one thing’s for sure right now; Cloud storage is here to stay… For the moment at least!

If you’re interested in Cloud solutions for your business, why not get in touch with us at KubeNet? You can give us a call on 0344 873 4488 or email us at to find out more.