For once, and with trepidation, I actually do ask for advice!
My parents have several digital cameras and a digital video camera. It would be nice to have access to family photos and movies past their next hard drive crash and/or computer replacement. But all consumer digital media seems unreliable enough for long or even medium term storage of family photos and similar.
I could organise some kind of backup routine for them, but the developing and nagging and testing and recoveries involved would annoy all three of us; contrary to the common parent-of-geek mythology my parents are no slavish devotees of my computing advice and like to keep a great deal of control themselves. And I get bored with that stuff. I want more set-and-forget:
ok, stick your photos here and they’ll be there ten years from now.
One possible solution would be something like
here, upload them to [some remote hard drive of mine]. Advantages: I have, unlike quite a few commercial entities, managed to hang onto a great deal of my digital files for ten years. Disadvantages: the software for this largely seems to suck in that it will be difficult to give them the motivation in terms of "and it will be shared with family really easily!": lots of creating galleries and so forth required to make things findable. I use F-Spot and Gallery and both of them leave sad dingy marks on my soul sometimes. I value the resulting organisation enough to do it, they probably do not, at least initially.
So should I just tell them to pay for a Flickr account? Or maybe Picasa? Or some similar website I probably haven’t heard of? I realise that stuff in the big wet cloud is vulnerable to both commercial failure of the provider and catastrophic failure on the part of their sysadmins, but at least it’s not vulnerable to my boredom or that of my parents (although Flickr at least is vulnerable to
forgetting to pay Flickr). What has good desktop tools with the fewest clicks between
plug camera in and
digital files are safely squirreled away and as a bonus available for viewing by selected people?
I realise none of this is fail-safe, and if they aren’t interested in preserving the data it ultimately won’t happen, I just want to lower the barriers as much as possible and give it the best chance.
If you have thoughts and don’t know how to get in contact, email per this.