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Abideen claims to have placed a 45 second video clip on a single sheet of paper, with the possibility of up to 450GB on the horizon - Image courtesy Arab News
Rainbow technology still in the works but holds promise

According to a report from the Arab News, a university technology student named Sainul Abideen has invented a method of storing massive amounts of digital data on a plain piece of paper that he claims could store many times the capacity of the best Blu-ray or HD-DVD discs. In fact, Abideen says that his Rainbow technology can enable him to store from 90 to 450GB on a piece of paper. As far as a real life demonstration of a 450GB paper goes, the technology still needs development.

Abideen, who hails from the Kerala, India, claims that that his Rainbow system is better than a binary storage because instead of using ones and zeros to represent data, Abideen uses geometric shapes such as squares and hexagons to represent data patterns. Color is also used in the system to represent other data elements. According to Abideen, all that's required to read the Rainbow prints is a scanner and specialized software.

The reporter at Arab News claims to have seen 450 pages of fully printed foolscap being stored on a 4-square inch piece of Rainbow paper. The reporter also claimed that he was shown a 45-second video clip that was stored using the Rainbow system on a plain piece of paper. Interestingly, 45-seconds of video isn't a lot, and if the Rainbow system can store up to 450GB, then we need to be watching full length high-definition videos from a piece of paper.

One of the major advantages of the Rainbow system is the fact that it should cost a lot less to produce than typical polycarbonate DVD and CD discs. Abideen claims that huge databanks can be constructed out of Rainbow-based storage mediums. Although the main attraction is cheap paper right now, other media can use the Rainbow system too.

As of right now, Abideen's system is still under research at the Muslim Educational Society Engineering College and although no major companies have expressed interest, Abideen is confident of the system's future. According to the report, Aibdeen is hard at work at developing a Rainbow scanner that would be small enough for integration into notebook computers. If developed, a Rainbow printer will likely be next up.

In other high-capacity storage news, DailyTech previously reported that Hitachi-Maxell is in the progress of producing holographic media for shipment this year. Holographic storage is one of the biggest forward-looking storage technologies and holds a great deal of promise -- as well as data.


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i have seen something like this before...
By darcmatter on 11/24/2006 5:47:05 PM , Rating: 2
I remember a long time ago where a company had developed a storage method in which an executable as a matter of relevance when an average software installation was a few mbytes in size was encoded into a special barcode that could be printed on paper that when rescanned into another computer with their own software ocr would produce the file in the original size with out any data corruption. I believe the technology was evaluated in a magazine called network world from what I believe 1997-2001. I have been trying to find the article for a while with no avail. if anyone remember who the company was or if they still exist i would like to know thanx.




RE: i have seen something like this before...
By Wwhat on 11/25/2006 9:17:39 PM , Rating: 2
I (and many others) do believe it is theoretically possible to uniquely represent enormous amounts of data with a small value and then using the right algorithm retrieve that data back.
For a while they thought MD5's were always unique (and with enormous effort it is reversible) but then mathematicians proved it wasn't 100% foolproof and theoretically two dissimilar sets of data can have the same MD5, still, there must be an algorithm that makes it possible, problem is finding it and then making it reversible with current computing powers.


By saratoga on 11/26/2006 9:31:36 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I (and many others) do believe it is theoretically possible to uniquely represent enormous amounts of data with a small value and then using the right algorithm retrieve that data back.


Everyone believes this. What you're talking about was proven by Shannon in the 1940s, before there were even computers. He used books in a library which he opened to random pages. Seriously, what you're talking about has been a huge area of research for 50 years now. Wikipedia him and start reading his papers.

quote:
For a while they thought MD5's were always unique (and with enormous effort it is reversible) but then mathematicians proved it wasn't 100% foolproof and theoretically two dissimilar sets of data can have the same MD5,


No one ever thought MD5 was unique. By definition MD5 was not unique. They thought there was no computationally reasonable way to calculate one of the infinately many possible files that would have a given MD5 sum.

quote:
still, there must be an algorithm that makes it possible, problem is finding it and then making it reversible with current computing powers.


What, reverseing a hash? Theres a universal algorythm for that. Just compute the has of all possible files and see which ones match.


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