The ultimate data storage solution is now up and running on a remote island far to the north of Norway. What’s truly interesting is that solution might provide the ultimate use for blockchain technology – the preservation of the world’s wealth and knowledge and civilization itself.
The Arctic World Archive located 300 meters underground in an old coal mine on the island of Svalbard is designed to provide the ultimate backup solution. It’s supposed to keep your data safe from the Apocalypse itself. Among other things, the Archive is designed to be impervious to nuclear attacks and electromagnetic pulses.
To store data in the Archive a company called Piqi uses a combination of cutting edge digital technology and old-school ingenuity, The Verge reported. Piqi uses proprietary technology to convert data and images into QR (quick-read) Code that is printed on long reels of film.
The film is stored in the vault where permafrost is supposed to keep it safe for 500 to 1,000 years. That means our descendants will be able to retrieve the data if they need it in the 25th Century.
The Ultimate in Data Backup
Data can be sent to the Archive quickly via high-speed internet and retrieved in 20 or 30 minutes, Piql founder Rune Bjerkestrand claimed.
“Film is an optical medium, so what we do is, we take files of any kind of data — documents, PDFs, JPGs, TIFFs — and we convert that into big, high-density QR codes,” Bjerkestrand told The Verge. “Our QR codes are massive, and very high resolution; we use greyscale to get more data into every code. And in this way we convert a visual storage medium, film, into a digital one.”
If Bjerkestrand is right blockchain might be one of the digital mediums that can be stored on film at the Archive. That means it may be possible to preserve Ethereum smart contracts and cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ether indefinitely.
Will Blockchain Save Civilization and Your Money from Doomsday?
There are already a number of QR Code based payment solutions out there including Walmart Pay, Chase Pay and Alipay. If Piqi were able to perfect a blockchain that can be preserved on its film, the company would have the ultimate backup for wealth and smart contracts stored in cryptocurrency or ethereum.
An example of such an investment might be an ethereum bond or annuity that pays out in ether or possibly U.S. dollars. Another might be a large block of bitcoin or some future cryptocurrency.
Many investors, wealthy individuals and investors might turn to the Archive to preserve everything via blockchain. That might be what the Archive’s owners; Piqi and the Norwegian mining company SNSK, are betting on. The Archive is a private for profit venture that might be showing us the future of data storage.