D’oh and Cents

Everything is capable of dramatic change in a matter of seconds, whether it’s the few seconds that you have in between realizing an accident is about to occur and seeing it happen, or, the moment when you realize that you have accidentally wiped out a disk drive that was worth billions of dollars.

I had occasion once, in college, while finishing up a paper on Irish poets, to rest my foot on the rocker switch of my power strip, shutting my computer off, sending my unsaved, non-backed-up work howling back into the void of other unwritten lit. papers. I remember sitting there dumbly, for a few seconds, staring at the black screen, willing the entire transaction to go in reverse, with all of the desperate, Diet-Coke fueled hours I’d just spent sweating over my keyboard flashing in front of my eyes. And this was just a paper. One can’t even begin to imagine the scalp-prickling horror of being the technician responsible for losing data worth $38 billion. Well, you can, but, chances are, it’ll give you the same feeling you have when you’ve stayed up for about thirty hours and have eaten nothing but Hot Pockets.

The end result of this disaster was, in terms of the fund recipients, fairly small, monetarily-speaking. However, the money that the fund had to spend to recover the data, and pay all of those involved in its rescue, was substantial, and is a fine example of a situation where that old trope, ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’ would’ve come in handy, in the form of an ElephantDrive account.

Backing up never seems more salient than when you’re facing the prospect of dealing with the aftermath of having not backed up your data–be it data worth billions of dollars, or, simply that one, priceless, well-turned phrase in a paper that was the by-product of a single caffeine-giddy moment you’ll never be able to recover. Either way, backing up, as I’m sure fund managers and students alike can agree, makes an infinite amount of sense.

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