You can make a disk tell you when data is actually on the platter
No, you can ask a disk to tell you. It might even be honest about it if you never get the buffer too full. The commercial incentives to lie for the sake of benchmarks are extremely strong. Drives that don't lie cost a lot more, and are slower. Honesty is an extra-cost option. If you don't pay for honesty (few do) you won't get it.
Honesty usually costs a lot more than a UPS.
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