The Sunday New York Times had this little story
regarding one of the passengers on the US Air flight that crashed into
the Hudson River:
When US Airways Flight 1549 went into the Hudson River last month, it
gave William Wiley, an engineer at Software Associates, a new meaning
for the term "computer crash."
Mr. Wiley was on his way home to Johnson, Tenn., from the company's
headquarters on Long Island. He had years of work on his laptop,
carefully backed up on another laptop — but both were on the plane with
Now the two laptops are among approximately 50,000 passenger items that
a mortuary company has frozen, in refrigerated trucks, to preserve them
until they can be dried, cleaned and returned to their owners."
Good luck getting the data back from a wet and frozen hard drive.
particular situation is not likely to happen to anyone, but you can
imagine innumerable similar circumstances. The more frequent event is
that someone breaks into your house or car and steals your computer and
the external backup drive sitting next to it. We hear stories like that
all the time.
In any event, the US Air story, like the California
wildfire stories last Fall, all mount up to a compelling reason to
backup online where the data is safe from all these hazards.