New research backs what IBM founder Thomas J. Watson said more than 50 years ago: “Good design is good business.” Design-driven companies have outperformed the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock market index by 228 percent in the past 10 years, according to an analysis from the Design Management Institute and consulting firm Motiv Strategies.
For graphic designer Caroline Hilman, her digital and print work enhances brands from communications companies to architecture firms. Hilman’s interactive design work ranges across web design, microsites, landing pages, HTML emails and mobile applications. As art director at global communications and enterprise IT firm Tata Communications, she designed the user experience, user interface and visual design for the company’s website.
Her print designs include infographics, brochures and branding. For Slice, a smartphone app that tracks online purchases, she created an infographic about the popularity of daily deals. Hilman also designed the logo for architecture firm Elevation Architects.
The assets she designs are invaluable to companies, but it’s ultimately up to Hilman to store and protect the work she creates. "It's important to back up my work, because the projects that I'm working on are always evolving," she says.
Hilman’s average project requires 1GB of storage, she says. She does all of her work on one computer, a Macbook Pro 15-inch, and with a 27-inch Thunderbolt monitor. Hilman saves her projects on an external hard drive and says that she's considering other solutions to further protect design files. “At this time, I only keep one copy, but I'm planning to get the redundant external hard drive—dual-bay hard drive—in the near future,” Hilman says.
Redundancy offers extra security for external hard drive users. Most external hard drives contain a single drive. When the drive fails, users typically lose all of the data stored on it. Dual-bay drives use RAID technology to increase performance and provide data redundancy. They create a mirror of data on two disks, so that if one fails, users can recover data from the healthy one.
While Hilman hasn’t had any catastrophic data disasters yet, she says that her current process could be more organized. “Sometimes I saved my data on a thumb drive that I planned on moving to my main hard drive," she says. "It's a tedious process and from time-to-time I forget to do so.”
A sound backup is not only crucial to Hilman, whose career depends on it, but also on the diverse brands she supports with her designs.
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