Monday, November 18, 2013

Bad sectors in Centretown

Back in July, my hard disk drive crashed, losing two months' worth of photos (about 1600). At the end of October I got a surprise call from the guy I'd brought it to, who said he was able to recover over 90% of the data. I was able to push this to about 97% of the photos that I had taken since my previous backup.

Some of them, however, were damaged. The hard drive had bad sectors and in the recovery many of the photos were damaged (only a very small number were completely unreadable). The damage inflicted on them actually has a bit of an artistic tone to them. Here's a photo of 222 Queen Street (which is where the RMOC headquarters were before it moved to the building that's now City Hall):

I discovered that I actually had a more recent backup on an external drive, up to mid-June. From this, I was able to push the recovery rate to about 99% of my photos, since many of the damaged photos were taken before then. Here's the original of the photo above:

This one is of the Oak Street Complex building that extends from Somerset to Gladstone along the O-Train pathway. There is a thin horizontal strip where the data was lost, and for some reason the part below that is offset.

Because the break happens right around the roofline, the damage isn't obvious. Here's the original:

Some of them had a very small amount of missing information, or the damage was all at the bottom of the photo. Here is a bunch of old cast iron watermain pipes that were dug out from under Bronson Avenue. There's a thin horizontal strip and the offset of the image below that is minimal.

The biggest difference is a slight change of colour of the section below the break:

A lot of them looked more like this, with a relatively wide band, and the section below is both offset and darkened:

The original photo, looking eastbound along Arlington at Bronson:

This one is the most discoloured, though it comes across really nice. The truss section of the Prince of Wales railway bridge is offset by about one segment and the sun peeking out at dusk goes well with the yellowish colour:

The original, also a nice picture!

You can also learn a thing or two (not only about remembering to back up regularly!). This photo of 90 Elgin under construction was split almost right down the middle, and is a bit of an eye-twister:

Because we know the walls are vertical, we don't really notice the difference in angle of the extreme left and right of the photo until they're put right next to each other. Here's the original:

I like to think of these as artistic collages. Doesn't this remind you of the cheesy postcards you see at the tourist shops?

This was one of the photos I had taken at Doors Open Ottawa this year, from the roof of the C.D. Howe building (240 Sparks). I was really upset about losing photos of things that I couldn't just re-take, so it was relieving to get my photos back from Doors Open Ottawa, Bluesfest, and some other in-the-moment things.

One last one, on Gilmour at Bank Street, the back of the building that houses Bridgehead. Unfortunately this was taken in late July, so I didn't have an undamaged backup. A lot of the image is gone, and frankly, I don't remember why I took this photo. Maybe there was something happening on the second floor of the building; we'll never know!

So let this be a lesson to you: remember to back up regularly! It's easy to put it off until you need it, at which point it's too late!

No comments:

Post a Comment