Thursday, November 26, 2009

Various days behind and ahead

Today I am pondering dull things. Like: Why do they sell 8GB USB sticks that are actually only size 7 and a half? Why do I collapse the internet every time I try to set up a network printer anywhere? And why do I never write down when I move house, on one special sheet of paper to keep with my passport maybe, so that when official bodies ask about it I have a vague idea of where I've been all my life? All the while my new netbook is making scary bleeping noises while I'm setting it up. It's a day of dates and numbers.

Yesterday, in contrast, I was striding through the city buying fabulous clothes and animal-cruelty-free cosmetics and eating cake and pizza with my friend, and we talked about how everything seems strangely possible at the moment.

Tomorrow shall be a day of colours and measurements when I go to visit the publisher's so we can make all my hamster artworks the right format...


John Peacock said...

Why do they sell 8GB USB sticks that are actually only size 7 and a half?

Because they calculate the size of gigabytes wrong to mislead customers -

The most obvious way to calculate a kilobyte would be 1000 x 1, but actually it's 1,024 x 1 (on account of binaryness*).

Similarly a megabyte is 1,024 x 1,024 or 1,048,576 bytes

And a gigabyte is 1,024 x 1,048,576 or 1,073,741,824 bytes

As opposed to 1,000,000,000.

I think it's that the stick is described as times-1,000 kind of gigabytes, but the capacity is measured in proper times-1,048- style gigabytes. Something like that.

But then you knew that, didn't you?

*(1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, 256, 512, 1,024)

Viviane Schwarz said...

HA! I knew there was a reason, and expected it to be smaller - but I didn't think it would amount to half a fake gigabyte. But hang on, that's still wrong, isn't it? The retail Gigabyte is a number that's not used anywhere but on packaging?

By the way, everything ended well, the internet is still here, the printer is printing and I am writing this on my all-new shiny netbook.