Re: I stuck with CDs
- I am buying CDs in batches of 15-30 now, sometimes on impulse, and would be nice to just put them in a stack and let a machine rip them,
There's a Nakamichi 5-disc CD drive somewhere in my Pile Of Stuff. Two even, one SCSI, one IDE. Problem is that the IDE one needed a special driver (for W98, and probably not updated since) to make the individual CDs available to the OS; the SCSI one had each disc as a separate LUN, which would probably work with controllers and OSes that know how to deal with that. Slot-loading, so I'd figure a bit easier for a robot to Händel. I've also seen a CD drive, Pioneer IIRC, that took a magazine with 3 or 4 discs.
Apropos of robot-loading a drive not built that way, at a DEC customer I came across a contraption they had had engineered to deal with backing up their really vast (for that time) disk farm without operator intervention. They were using a rebadged IBM unit that could put somewhere in the region of one GB on a tape, with the unit having a stacker that could hold 6 tapes. This was quite insufficient, so a local engineering workshop had built a loader that could shove a new tape into the top slot of the stacker each time the drive loaded a fresh cartridge, taking it from the bottom stacker slot and dropping the tapes in the stacker one level. The bin for receiving the finished tapes had been fitted with a slide so that the cartridges dropped into a foam-lined box instead of in the receptacle that could hold maybe ten tapes. Servicing the drive required moving the loader, which appeared to be built from a few railway bridge leftovers, then repositioning it afterwards. And if it was misaligned, the spindle drive pushing the next tape into the loader was strong enough to actually push the loader away from the unit (and thus bugger up the backup run).