Memory Matters

We aren’t talking “gray matter” memory here-though that type of memory matters too.  We are talking digital camera memory.  Digital camera memory is where your image data or photos are stored in your camera.

Most of the newer cameras have limited amounts of internal (sometimes called “on-board” or “built-in”) memory.  Nearly all digital cameras rely on media or memory cards for storage.  A media card is like re-useable film.  Fill it with your images, download the images, and then fill the card again and again.  Media cards don’t wear out easily.

To use a media card, insert it into the corresponding slot on your camera.  When you take a picture, the camera saves the image data to the media card.  When the card is full, it must be emptied or downloaded to your computer’s hard drive.  There are several ways to do this.  One way is to insert the card into the corresponding slot on the computer.  Software does the rest.  Another way is to connect the camera to the computer using USB or Firewire technology.  The latest method is wireless or Wi-Fi technology-no removing the card from the camera or hooking up cables.  At this point in time, only the newest camera models use Wi-Fi.

There are several types of media cards available.  Your camera will dictate which type you must use.  Compact Flash, SmartMedia, SecureDigital, MultiMedia, Memory Stick and xD Picture cards are the most common.  Media cards are available with capacities ranging up to 2 gigabytes (GB).

After your images are transferred to you computer’s hard drive, don’t forget to back up your images to a separate storage device.  As reliable as hard drives are, failures do occur.  A second internal hard drive, an external hard drive, a Zip disk, a CD or DVD is common back up devices.  Web sites are available to store back up images for a small fee.

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