While big capacity memory cards are great, a recent experience of friends had me rethink my choices.
My friends where travelling around Europe on a 4 week coach trip, nearing the end of the trip they had a camera stolen.
While loosing the camera hurts what hurt more was the camera had a 4gig SD card in it ample to take over 1000 pictures(estimate of about 1400) which was great in theory because it meant that unlike their video for which they carried pile of blank tapes and mailed them home when full , the camera contained every picture they had taken. Being on a coach tour they didnt have time to find net cafes to utilise online storage sites or get them copied to CD/DVD.
What they have done is buy 8 x 256meg cards for their new camera that way only the card in use is at risk of being lost, not the whole lot especially those precious photos.
Also make sure any extended trips have plenty of opportunities to go online or get the images stored onto other media and use them dont wait think it wont happen.
Having your data located in a single location on a single medium is always a risk, and that doesn't change between one 4GB card or eight 256MB cards. (The latter are just as likely to be stolen en-masse, and have the added risk of being easier to be lost individually.)
Always make backups as soon as possible, and store the backups in a separate location.
That said: man, I can't believe how much that must've sucked for your friends. :/
[ Edit: Edited on Sep 28, 2007, at 10:55 AM by Sander ]
How he/she lost the camera?
Another option is what I did after a similar situation. Buy a portable photo storage device (a portable hard drive which can copy the photos from the card without needing a computer to copy them). I got an 80GB one and what I did is I have a 1GB SD card and take my photos as normal and then after I get about 50 photos I back them up to the hard drive. Then when the card is getting close to about the 700mb mark, I take the card to a camera shop and get it burnt to CD. I then use a 2nd 1GB card and send the CD home in the mail. When I get notification via email that the CD has arrived and the photos open properly then I format the memory card that had the main lot of photos already on CD. I will also then at some stage connect the hard drive up to a computer and delete all the duplicate photos as I would have copied many of the same photos about 20 times until the last copy I did just before burning it to CD.
I think my method of the having 3 sources with the same photos is a more careful option. This device is not all that expensive when you compare the amount of storage space you can get. You can get them for like $30 off Ebay plus the cost of a laptop hard drive (it can't be a normal hard drive).
[ Edit: Edited on Sep 30, 2007, at 4:29 AM by aharrold45 ]