Storage media is the carrier on which or in which information can be stored. Since the early years of storage and computer technology, storage media have changed dramatically. For example, in the 1950s, data for long-term use was stored as punched patterns on paper or cardboard - as punched tape and punched cards. Data for short-term retrieval was held with relays and later with flip-flops and core memories. This was followed by storage media with magnetic storage methods, first the magnetic disks and magnetic tapes, and later the hard disks and floppydisks.
In the past, storage media were among the most expensive components of a computer. At that time, a megabyte of core memory cost several thousand or ten thousand German marks. Accordingly, operating systems and application programs were designed to require as little memory as possible. It was not until the advent of semiconductor technology that random access memory( RAM) and read only memory( ROM) revolutionized short-term memory and read-only memory in terms of production technology, size and, above all, cost.
In memory development, a multitude of RAM and ROM variants and various flash memories followed. Electronic, optical and magneto-optical storage media were developed in parallel: solid-state drives( SSD), compact discs( CD) followed by digital versatile discs( DVD), HD-DVDs and Blu-Ray discs. These technologies have been accompanied by other interesting developments such as holographic-based storage, bubble memory and the memristor.
A wide variety of products have emerged from the various technologies. For example, tape drives for information technology and video technology, the many different packages for semiconductor memories, flash memories, memory cards, magnetic cards, smart cards, SIM cards and for many other products.