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optical disk,any of a variety of information storage disks that are played or read using a laserlaser
[acronym for light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation], device for the creation, amplification, and transmission of a narrow, intense beam of coherent light. The laser is sometimes referred to as an optical maser.
..... Click the link for more information. . Optical disks include compact discscompact disc
(CD), a small plastic disc used for the storage of digital data. As originally developed for audio systems, the sound signal is sampled at a rate of 44,100 times a second, then each sample is measured and digitally encoded on the 4 3-4 in (12 cm) disc as a series of
..... Click the link for more information. (CDs and CD-ROMs), laser discs (see videodiscvideodisc
disk used with a special player and television to reproduce both pictures and sound. A videodisc player cannot record television programs off the air for later playback, unlike a videocassette recorder (VCR) or recordable DVD (see digital
..... Click the link for more information. ), and digital versatile discsdigital versatile disc
or digital video disc
(DVD), a small plastic disc used for the storage of digital data. The successor media to the compact disc (CD), a DVD can have more than 100 times the storage capacity of a CD.
..... Click the link for more information. (or digital video discs; DVDs and DVD-ROMs). WORM [Write Once/Read Many] disks can be used to record data, but once data is recorded it cannot be altered except by obliterating the old version and storing the new version on a previously unused portion of the disk. Magneto-optical disks, such as the rewritable optical disk and the recordable disk used with the Mini Disc player, have a special layer, as of barium ferrite, that can be magnetically polarized by a recording head when heated with a laser. Data or sound may be recorded to and erased from any portion of a magneto-optical disk multiple times.
optical disk[′äp·tə·kəl ′disk]
A type of video disk storage device consisting of a pressed disk with a spiral groove at the bottom of which are submicrometer-sized depressions that are sensed by a laser beam.