So I've run into a rather annoying situation with upgrading the operating system on a laptop so I've had to go about backing up the files.
To do this I got out a 1tb external hard drive that had a bunch of free space on it. I considered going and buying a hard drive for the purposes of backing things up. But I assumed that plugging in the external HDD would be the fastest way to get everything backed up. I plugged it in and started transferring 200gb of files.
The estimated time was 44 hours!
I find it interesting how since the introduction of SSD technology I've rarely had to think about file transfer speed except when done over a network.
I could have got to the store and bought a faster drive and completed the task in fewer calendar days by buying other technology.
For a one off task like this it wouldn't have been worth it but if a business did this a lot it most certainly would be worth it if there was an associated opportunity cost for the time of the employees.
I was reminded of a term people used to refer to these drive as "spinning rust" drives, in reference to the magnetised iron particles that exist on the platters.