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Homework files?

by guns90 / September 7, 2006 12:34 PM PDT

I have twins entering high school. My computer is dated to say the least. What are the most popular forms of data storage; CD, DVD, floppy, zip drive, flash drive. etc. used by public schools these days?

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Flash drive
by 3rdalbum / September 8, 2006 8:43 PM PDT
In reply to: Homework files?

Flash drives are your safest bet for data transfer, and even public school computers should have USB ports.

CD-Rs are also okay for occasional use, but their "write-once" nature makes them a bit wasteful for documents that are likely to change, as a new CD must be burnt each time. If you decided to use CD-RWs, you might find that some discs work in some computers but not in others.

The only thing you should be aware of when using Flash drives on Linux is that if you copy over a large file to the drive, then try to unmount it, it may take a while to unmount. This is because the file is still copying in the background! Don't worry, this is a feature of Linux, and your drive will unmount when copying really finishes.

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OK, here's my take
by linkit / September 8, 2006 8:52 PM PDT
In reply to: Homework files?

I don't know what's ''the most popular'' these days in public schools, but I can tell you about university.

It really depends on the class. Just get a computer with a DVD burner and you will be OK. Note that DVD burners can make both DVD's and CD's. The USB ports take care of the rest. If needed, you can attach flash, floppy, and Zip drives to USB ports. Also, if you need to get video into your computer, make sure it has a Firewire port.

USB flash drives and mini hard drives (and iPods) have essentially supplanted all other removable media for a quick save of files. Some classes give a cheapo USB flash drive to every student at the beginning of the year/semester.

More permanent/long term storage means you burn to a CD or DVD. (Backups.)

Floppies drives have essentially disappeared in today's portables/notebooks, and many desktops don't ship with them. Floppy disks are physically too big and hold too little. You will, however, find the occasional class that uses 3.5'' floppies. You can add an inexpensive internal floppy drive or a USB floppy drive to a computer if the need arises.

Zip drives = dead tech, except for those companies/departments that need them because they still have files/archives on Zip disks. Again, add this drive later and only if needed.

Some classes use no removable media. Homework assignments are downloaded from webpages or ftp servers. Homework results are sometimes submitted to an instructor via email, but the more common practice is to submit a hard copy along with an electronic copy (typical for computer programming classes).

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