Sony just revealed the new laser they're developing alongside Tohoku University. Regardless of the future of physical media, the specs are astounding to consider.
The blue-violet laser fires ultra fast bursts of very thin beams of light. The wavelength measures 405 nanometers—that part is actually exactly the same as Blu-ray—but it pulses for durations of just 3 picoseconds. (A nanometer, as most of you know, is one billionth of a meter. And a picosecond is one-trillionth of a second.) The light output will be over 100x that of similar lasers.
Such a laser could read a next generation media with 20x the capacity of Blu-ray, meaning you could fit up to 50 movies on a single disc. Many have already pointed out, that's enough storage to fit an entire season of a TV show. But heck, that's enough to fit many complete TV series if you think about it. [Examiner via Slashdot via CrunchGear]