Death and Disaster – Have a Data Backup Plan

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The US had a major earthquake yesterday….It covered major territory though thankfully it did not cause major damage.

Between that and the passing of a grandfather these have me thinking a lot about data preservation.
My Aunts and Uncles have been clearing out the house that was left behind and passing along family trinkets, heirlooms and mementos. Interestingly enough the most sought after possessions are Grandpa’s books, journals, photos.

In preparing for the impending death of my Grandmother several years ago I spent many days and hours with her in front of a scanner where we fed thousands of photos through a scanner that was big enough and smart enough to automatically feed, save and name thousands of pictures. We had the troublesome task of babysitting the scanner to make sure it all worked out all right and though we never got around to sorting the now digital copies of the pictures at least we have several copies at different homes around the US serving as back up copies.

Having see an earthquake and a funeral happen in the same week makes me want to go home and scan my own big box of photos – I’ve actually already done this once before but it was several computers ago. I think I have them on my external hard drive as well but need to go home and find out if for sure they are safe.

You never know when a disaster, death etc. will occur so it’s best to at least get a copy of them onto a computer or external drive. Perhaps a digital copy saved to an online storage company, cloud based, would also be a good idea.

The trinkets are fun to have but the data, photos, writings etc. are priceless and I’d hate to see those disappear due to simple lack of preparation.  Of course all of us also have bills, memories, journal and just random memorabilia in paper format that really should be scanned and sorted digitally.  Along with a 72 hour kit it would be pretty easy to include a jumpdrive or even and external hard drive of 1 Terra byte or more fairly inexpensively nowadays.

Scanners – I used an older Cannon Scanner that accepted a stack of around 40 – 60 photos possibly more.
I have since thrown it out as it wore out.

I have not been and am not really in the market for a new scanner that does multi-feed – depending on if I can find my digital photos collection or not I may be soon.

Here is one at Amazon.com that may do the trick….I am not sure though so make sure to read up on these first.

If anyone knows of any nice scanners that can do a great job with multipage scanning please post links in the comment thread.
By the way – with these scanners you can sometimes scan old negatives and get photos from those as well.

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