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American airlines still buy floppy disks: why do they need them

Although archaic floppy disks are a relic of the past, at least one industry is still interested in these storage devices. Insider.

Photo: IStock

Tom Persky, website founder floppydisk.com which sells and recycles floppy disks, says the aviation industry is one of its biggest customers in the new book "Floppy Disk Fever: The Curious Afterlives of a Flexible Medium" by Nick Hilkmann and Thomas Wahlskaar.

“My biggest clients — and where most of the money comes from — are industrial users,” Persky said in an interview for a book published online by Eye On Design last week. “These are people who use floppy disks as a way to transfer information to and from a machine. Imagine it's 1990 and you're building a big industrial machine of one kind or another. You are designing it for 50 years and you want to use the best technology available.”

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Persky added: “Take the aviation industry as an example. Probably half of the air fleet in the world today is over 20 years old, and floppy disks are still used in some elements of avionics. It's a huge consumer."

He also said that floppy disks are still being used in the medical sector. And then there are "amateurs" who want to "buy ten, 20, or even 50 floppy disks."

Floppy disks hit the news recently when Japanese Digital Minister Taro Kano declared "war" on devices, tweeting earlier this month that the Japanese digital agency would change rules requiring businesses to use floppy disks and CDs, switching to online storage instead. Services.

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