As you frequent readers know, I'm a big one on frequent backups... both for my office and my personal data at home. I have several portable hard drives as well as some drive enclosures that take standard drives and allow me to connect them as extra drives. All of these connect via USB which makes it really easy. Of course there are some problems with this setup. The small portable USB drives are more expensive than a 3.5" SATA drive of the same capacity... and I'm not opposed to saving some money.
That's why I was so intrigued when I saw the Cirago USB 3.0 Docking Station. The idea here is a simple one. The device connects to your computer via USB. You simply slide in either a 3.5" or 2.5" SATA I/II hard drive and your computer will recognize the disk. The docking station acts as a hard drive enclosure (even though the hard drive is not "enclosed"). It is "hot swappable" meaning you can remove a hard drive and put another in without having to do anything. Your computer will realize the old one is gone and the new one is connected. Simple!
If you have older hard drives laying around that you'd like to put to use, this is a great idea. You could even begin using the less expensive hard drives that fit inside computers as portable backup drives. Also, if for any reason you need to get info off of a computer, like a laptop with a burned out screen, just put the hard drive in the dock and you have access to all the data.
The USB 3.0 standard means you can move data at speeds up to 5 Gbps (wow!), but it is also backward compatible meaning it will connect to older computers with either USB 2.0 or USB 1.0 ports. The retail is rumored to be $49.99 and it should be available now ( a quick check of Amazon shows it available for $46.00). This is one of those better mousetrap devices that just makes sense. If you'd like to visit the company web page, here it is. However, there is not a ton of info.