Sticky Flash Drives Work Like Post-It Notes

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Now all those reminders stuck to a desktop monitor might actually have computer memory. Two designers recently created a concept for paper-thin flash drives that easily adhere to surfaces. So long, USB drives.

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The flash drives, called DataStickies, were conceived by designers Parag Anand and Aditi Singh from the New Dehli-based design studio ASDS. From their DataStickies description, it sounds like they were sick of fiddling around at the back of computers to locate a USB port and then fit a flash drive into it just so.

Instead, they picture sticky note flash drives that store data and can transfer it directly to an optical data transfer surface or ODTS, essentially a thin panel that gets attached to the front of a computer screen or other electronic device. DataStickies would contain special pressure-sensitive, conductive adhesive that could be reused without leaving marks, according to the designers. You could also write on them, and their edges would light up when they’re transferring data.

“If a file needs to be given to someone, a single sticky can be handed out rather than an entire pen drive,” Anand and Singh wrote. ”ata related to a particular subject in a book can be stuck on the relevant page.” Their concept just won the Red Dot Design 2014 award, one of the largest design competitions in the world. Hat tip to ScienceAlert’s Facebook page.

Each of the DataStickies would be made from graphene, a material GigaOm’s Signe Brewster aptly described as “made of a single layer of carbon atoms that are bonded together in a repeating pattern of hexagons.” She also pointed out that it’s a million times thinner than paper. Using graphene could mean the ability to carry significantly more data than most flash drives can handle now, although there are still challenges with the material.

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Looking at teensy flash drives in a store recently, I felt like an old fogey. Why, I remember the days when we had to delete big files from heavy external hard drives to make everything fit! And now it could all be stored in little notes stuck to the computer. Just don’t let the pets get anywhere near them. That important report could end up in the litter box.

Credit: DataStickies via Red Dot Design Award

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