I recently got a new pair of hearing aids. Just like any technology there are improvements year to year. The new pair is three generations ahead of my first pair that I got in 2009. Miniaturization and battery life is critical for hearing aids. You are basically wearing a computer behind each year with a tiny battery in each one that lasts about a week. Having been in the backup business for 30+ years I am fairly cautious about new technology but I also want to achieve the best possible hearing considering my hearing loss. I decided to try hearing aids that are controlled with my iPhone. My old pair had a button on it that could only make one change to help with restaurant background noise. Now, from the iPhone I have the ability to adjust the volume, interact with the phone, listen to audio streaming, set up programs for locations (GPS) that require different types of adjustments like restaurant background noise, movies theaters, cars, family room, and so on. Longer battery life, smaller batteries, and more efficient energy consumption with Bluetooth technology makes many of the new functions practical. Plus, I do understand what people are saying better than my last pair.
Last year a Redbooks point of view published called The Future will be...Worn. Less than a year from when this paper was published I am wearing the future! Here is a picture from the paper of a 1990s IBM TV ad showing a wearable PC prototype.
So what does this have to do with storage. Hearing aids increase the volume of the frequencies that I have difficulty hearing. In my case I have issues with higher frequencies that are part of the speech range. The new aids have a feature that uses the phone as a microphone and transmits everything to my hearing aids. At the same time it can record the conversations while it is transmitting. This gives me the ability to go back later on and listen to figure out if I missed anything or ask someone else to help me understand what was said. This has the potential of using a lot of storage that may need to be kept for the future. The possibilities of why you may want to record the conversations are endless. Not to mention security and privacy concerns. Right now I can think of many uses that could be useful for my day to day functioning. Also, I can think of many reason saving the data transmitted can be useful for analysis to help improve the technology that could improve my understanding of the conversations I am participating in.
Saving data streams is one thing. Creating meta data describing the data object to make it useful for analysis generates even more opportunities for future storage considerations and analytic possibilities. All requiring storage somewhere. This one example highlights how technology is improving our lives, creating more data, and more ideas. The Redbooks and Redpapers I work on give me a glimpse into how we will use storage in the future:
- Active Archive Implementation Guide with IBM Spectrum Scale Object and IBM Spectrum Archive
- IBM Spectrum Archive Enterprise Edition V1.2: Installation and Configuration Guide
- IBM TS4500 R2 Tape Library Guide