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Floppy 011

Both a storage medium and a fidget item. Sort of.

maxell floppy disk

The only blank floppy I could find near my desk.

By: Luke Dorny
maxell floppy disk
The only blank floppy I could find near my desk.

It looks like I’ll be covering my thoughts about storage mediums quite a bit, so here’s another format that was a large part of my life. Snapping the shield closed repeatedly was …a thing at my school (at least it was for me) and it turns out that teachers hated the sound.

Size

In the early ’80s I was mostly using 5” floppy disks to store my homework from the Tandy TRS-80 and CAD computer work that I was doing. But by the late ’80s, I remember the 3.5” floppy to be a standard at least for more than a decade after that. CDs became more popular in the ’90s as a delivery format (hashtag #macformat magazine!) but getting a CD recorder was a machine that cost more than $1000. Still, somehow software CD mailers were so common that they morphed into a drink coaster for some (hashtag #aol #americaonline, lol).

I designed labels for floppy disks for a software company in the early ’90s. It was well into the late ’90s when this iteration of the floppy disk started to wane in popularity. Zip disks and CD burners came along and provided a cedar chest full of space in comparison. #ripmixburn #clickofdeath

Kachunk.

It did fit in your pocket, if you dared to do that, otherwise I stored mine in carrying cases that held a few. Despite it no longer being floppy, it was much more useful than the previous 5” or 8” sizes. The MiniDisc size that came later is only marginally smaller than this, as is the mini CD single size.

I do remember having to use multiple disks to install Adobe Illustrator, somewhere around 10 or more, just to install the app. But it was likely faster to install it this way than it is today. Up for a quick debate?

Update

Check out my new post on Jim Golden Studios in Related below.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floppy_disk

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