Thursday, March 20, 2008

Don't Buy Blu-Ray

Don’t buy Blu-Ray and (of course) HD-DVD players or discs. It took so long for the battle over these two formats to be settled, they are both practically outdated already. The next generation format will be able to store 1 terabyte of data, compared to the lowly 50 gigabytes of data available on Blu-Ray. This new format is called TeraDisc and will be available as early as 2010. That’s less than two years from now.

What good is buying a whole new selection of videos and movies only to have to replace it in as little as 24 months, especially at the prices the disc pushers charge for their wares? Besides that, the quality for any older movies will not substantially improve enough to benefit from any newer formats anyway (at least without the huge expense of remastering, which ultimately is a degradation of quality of the original masters in the long run as formats continue to improve, requiring even more remastering.)

I would even be leery the TeraDisc format. Eventually, storing anything on discs or tapes will be as archaic as the horse and buggy. Why buy a disc at all when data can just be downloaded from a central location, such as iTunes (which already has movies). How data is stored will be one’s choice once they downloaded the content. There will be a variety of methods, including holographic cubes. The technology for this sort of storage and access is obtainable within our lifetimes, maybe even within the next decade or two.

I’m not saying that people should avoid all intermediate data formats. I am saying people should be very choosy as to which formats they commit. As technology increases, any formats will likely obsolesce sooner. The formats that will stand longer are ones that will be major leaps over then current technology.

For me, I’m not going to jump on the Blu-Ray bandwagon. It won’t be that long until something far superior comes along. In my mind, Blu-Ray is not a replacement for DVD. It’s not enough of a leap to be considered as a replacement. It is just another alternative to it.

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