Microsoft collaborated with Warner Bros. to test Project Silica. The classic movie Superman was stored on a 7.5 by a 7.5-centimeter piece of quartz glass as part of Microsoft’s project to use ultrafast laser optics and artificial intelligence.
A glass that doesn’t smash
The tech giant started Project Silica in response to the overwhelming demand for cloud storage. The company wants to rethink how cloud data is stored and hopes Project Silica can lead in being a small device that holds mass storage.
The reason why Microsoft chose this silica glass as the material to hold the data is because of its durability. According to a media release by the brand, the glass can be boiled in hot water, baked in an oven, microwaved, flooded, scoured, and demagnetized.
Therefore, with its protective ability, the device is the perfect security guard for sensitive or historical archives. It was Warner Bros. that approached Microsoft first about storing Superman.
The movie powerhouse is searching for the best way to protect its classic films being destroyed. Moreover, the firm has a huge duty to make sure popular culture icons such as Superman or Casablanca don’t get destroyed. At the moment, it is the only institution that has the rights to the original of these films.
Subsequently, Warner Bros. Chief Technology Officer Vicky Colf spoke of how important it is for a breakthrough such as this.
“That had always been our beacon of hope for what we believed would be possible one day, so when we learned that Microsoft had developed this glass-based technology, we wanted to prove it out,” said Vicky Colf.
Microsoft’s cloud computing service, Azure, is the branch that is overseeing this project. Therefore, Chief technology officer Mark Russinovich shared his delight with the test.
“Storing the whole ‘Superman’ movie in glass and being able to read it out successfully is a major milestone,” said Mark Russinovich
“I’m not saying all of the questions have been fully answered, but it looks like we’re now in a phase where we’re working on refinement and experimentation, rather asking the question ‘can we do it?’”
With Project Silica, Microsoft is revolutionizing cloud-based storage. Currently, files from our devices saved to the cloud are stored in massive remote data centers.
These builds take up a lot of space and are costly to maintain. The demand for more storage increases the demand for real estate and manpower. Therefore, by storing an abundance of data on a hand size, lightweight device, space, and money are being saved.
Furthermore, this process creates a new way for media to be physicalized. Everything is digital now. We create books that we can’t hold, we also produce movies that we can’t gift, and we develop games that we can’t collect. So, by creating small, durable, and powerful cloud-based data storage, institutions can easily archive their work.
As files become more complex and the demand for secure data is increased. Therefore, initiatives such as this will be welcome in the next decade. Microsoft is in a prime position to pioneer new cloud services. Its xCloud program gearing up to be a big introduction, while its big money JEDI program with the United States government is an even bigger deal.
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