Minimalism: Protecting your assets
Reader Ricky (/xxxxxxx) is also an enthusiast of minimalism by digitising as much as possible, from music to bank statements. In a comment to my post on XXXXXX he raises the interesting topic of protecting digital assets. Opponents of relying too much on computerised records often point to the possibility of losing all the data; yet often these same people rely entirely on filing cabinets stuffed with paper and, in extreme cases, carry their life around with them in the form of a giant Filofax. Who, I wonder, is taking the greatest risk?
Digitisation in the interests of minimalism is actually bar far the safer method of archiving, provided you know what you are doing and take basic precautions. There are three main threats to digital records: failure or corruption of storage media, theft and, lastly, loss through disaster such as fire, flood or magnetic interference from alien spaceships. We can't do much about the latter, but the other threats are easily managed.
Backup of data is crucial, of course - not just once but in several places. I use a Time Machine backup, plus an incremental backup on an external portable disk (which travels with me) and, to make absolutely sure, an incremental backup on a Drobo system. Next comes off-site backup. I cover this in two ways. First, is an incremental backup on an external disk which I leave with friends. Every week I connect it and perform an automatic backup.