This past week my son had to do a family tree project for Spanish class with pictures of his various family members, and it occurred to me...
I don't have hard copies of pictures anymore. Everything's on this computer. If I don't back up my pictures on CD, I am one virus away from losing all those memories.
Not only that, but there's something real and sentimental about an album of pictures, whether they're attractively scrapbooked or just stuffed in an album. My printer sucks for printing photos, but I can upload them to Wal-Mart's site (I assume other retail developers have something similar, which I will look into because I'd rather not give Wal-Mart business if I don't have to) and get prints made for not that much money.
All my music lives on this computer, too. Well, not all. I am old enough to still have that stockpile of CDs, though I've ripped all my favorite ones. (Hell, I still have cassettes. No vinyl or 8-tracks tho.) But if I buy music these days, I'm usually buying it online and downloading it. Again... one virus away from losing that investment, unless I've burned them to CD.
For the most part, I think this is all great. For one thing, it cuts down on trash. Sending me email instead of a letter means I'm not tossing a paper letter. I'm not throwing away unwanted CDs (AOL doesn't send them anymore!). The photos that didn't come out don't end up as landfille, just another file in the recycle bin on my computer. So there are benefits.
On the other hand, I'm not likely to save that email in a scrapbook. Clicking through pictures doesn't mean as much as flipping through a scrapbook, somehow. And I definitely have to rethink my backup plan for the data that is on my computer right now.
I still prefer to journal with a pen in a pretty blank book. And an e-card will NEVER replace a Hallmark with a handwritten sentiment. What about you? Do you like hard data or is half your life on a hard drive?