IVY to visualise external data

December 18, 2007 | 13:49

Tags: #data #drive #external #ivy #monitor #oled #screen #usage

Sick of having to connect your portable drives to your PC in order to see their usage? A student at Eindhoven Technical University may have the answer. In a design project dubbed de groene banaan (the green banana) the student has come up with an intriguing concept for an external storage device known as IVY.

The technology within the device is pretty basic – it's just an external hard drive – but it's the outside where the real innovation lies. The front of the device is an OLED screen which displays a block diagram visualising the usage of the device.

Put simply: big files appear as big blocks, little files appear as little blocks. A drive containing your collection of DVD ISOs will look quite a bit different to one containing your photo collection.

The more you use the drive, the more personalised the appearance is. Your drive will always look different to any other. That said, unless you have a particularly photographic memory it would still be nice for there to be an option to add a customisable text label to the cover if only to avoid arguments over ownership.

IVY is currently nothing more than a fascinating concept, but I'd certainly like to see a manufacturer take the idea and run with it: instant visualisation of how the storage is being used and how much is left without the need to plug it in? Do want.

Couple it with some Minority Report-esque animations and I'll be willing to pay a substantial premium over the cost of a standard external drive.

What do you think? Genuinely innovative idea, or have I just been blinded by shiny things again? Get posting in the forums.
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