File system

More to think about

  • Why are files called files?
  • Can files contain other files? Is that what a zip file is?
  • Can a file be empty?
  • Can a file’s name be the empty string?
  • A file is generally the unit of organised data on a storage device. So… is an SMS message on your phone a file? If not, what is it? That is, how else can things like messages be stored?
  • How can the same picture of a cat be in cat.gif, cat.png, and cat.jpg? What’s the difference between them? Which one is “best”?
  • If you can make a file smaller by zipping it, why don’t we just zip all files again and again, until they are all… tiny?
  • What happens when you delete a file? What does securely deleting a file really mean?
  • Are symbolic links (sometimes called “aliases”) files?
  • Can you delete the directory that you are currently in?
  • Is it possible to accidentally delete all the files on your computer?
  • If a filename doesn’t have an extension, how can you find out what kind of file it is? What tools are available to help you? How do they work?