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I just read a comment on What medium should be used for long term, high volume, data storage (archival)? What was meant by "I've figured that laser printing on acid-free paper would be a good way to store data (a few megabytes per page) that has a high probability of being readable in 100-200 years."?

How can I print few Megabytes per page? Is there any special software?

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closed as not a real question by Simon Sheehan, 8088, ChrisF, BBlake, CharlieRB Dec 21 '12 at 19:22

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

    
Well, it would involve a lot of 1s and 0s... –  Simon Sheehan Dec 21 '12 at 3:00
    
Indeed there is, although AFAIK, it was only in kilobytes (depending on the resolution of your printer/scanner). I'll try to find it for you. –  Breakthrough Dec 21 '12 at 3:17
    
I'm not sure why this is being voted to close, I'm fairly certain this is on-topic as far as Super User is concerned. –  Breakthrough Dec 21 '12 at 13:39

2 Answers 2

Here's a GPL implementation claiming 500KiB uncompressed, typically 3MiB compressed, at 600dpi: http://ollydbg.de/Paperbak/

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While it's unlikely you can get megabytes worth of data printed out (which would require a very high-resolution printer, and the equivalent scanner), it's quite feasible to print kilobytes worth onto a single piece of paper. There are various utilities which allow you to print binary files onto paper, with the equivalent functionality to scan them back in and reconstruct the original file.

One such tool is Twibright Optar, which from the description, "fits 200kB on an A4 page". It's possible to increase the data storage density using a higher-DPI printer, although you should note that it may affect data recovery in the future (see the reliability section in the above link; you could also overcome this with a few error-correcting encoding methods).

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Taking just one phrase overly literally, I'd say it's easy to store a few kilobytes on paper by writing longhand with a pen. –  minopret Dec 21 '12 at 4:25

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