The Importance of Backups

For some odd reason, this site crashed a while ago and wiped out most of the files associated with this blog. Although I had some backups, I’ve been slowly rebuilding this site back to its original format, which brings me to the subject of backups.

In the computer world, the general mantra is to save everything, make copies of everything, and backup your data. In other words, computers are so unreliable that you can never trust them to do what they’re supposed to do — sort of like raising children.

So the lesson is to always backup your data.¬†Unlike children, you want multiple copies of your data stored in separate locations while with children, you often wonder why you created them in the first place and the last thing you want is for multiple copies to be running around where you can’t see them in one location.

What does our inherent distrust of computers preserving our data mean? Besides the fact that our world is run by computers and we can’t seem to trust them longer than a few minutes before we’re frantically pressing the Save key, this means that for all our technical wizardry and awe of the latest gadgets, deep down we don’t trust our own creations to work right all the time.

People probably have more faith in the automotive industry than the computer industry because few people worry about buying two cars just in case their first car doesn’t start in the morning. Considering the massive recalls that General Motors has gone through with their ignition switch fiasco, this either means we have more faith in the automotive industry or that we have so little faith in the computer industry that the prospect of driving a faulty GM car seems more appealing than trusting our data to a personal computer.

Where else do we have backups in our lives? If you’re a big celebrity like Arnold Schwarzenegger, you probably have a mistress on the side as a backup to your wife. If you’re a major¬†athlete like LeBron James, you have the Cleveland Cavaliers as a backup when prospects start dimming with the Miami Heat. If you’re a controversial political figure like Sarah Palin, you probably have multiple aides to back up your brain when you can’t think of a coherent idea to say on your own.

The point is that in nearly all aspects of our lives, we have backups because we have so little trust and faith in life in general. Life insurance is a form of back ups in protecting our lives, although what it really does is insure that the people around us have a good life in case we die, which actually gives them an incentive to see you die as quickly as possible so they can find someone else to spend their life with while enjoying the money from your death.

Backups are a way of life, yet we too often ignore them, such as with computer data. The time to back up anything important is now. Unless, of course, you don’t have time to do so until disaster strikes, which is no different than the way our government tends to work, so you can rest assured you’re in good company if you don’t have the time to create backups.