Today at IDF, Intel unveiled Light Peak technology, a plan for an extremely high-speed optical cable they hope will land on consumer products in 2010. Imagine transferring an entire Blu-ray disk in 30 seconds. And that's just the beginning.
In Intel's words:
Existing electrical cable technology in mainstream computing devices is approaching practical limits for speed and length, due to electro-magnetic interference (EMI) and other issues. However, optical technology, used extensively in data centres and telecom communications, does not have these limitations since it transmits data using light instead of electricity. Light Peak brings this optical technology to mainstream computing and consumer electronic devices in a cost-effective manner.
Light Peak delivers 10Gb/s speeds right now, and could conceivably go as fast as 100Gb/s within a decade or so. Those kinds of speeds are even sustained over a 100-metre distance, which is really impressive. Intel is currently working with hardware manufacturers (computers, handhelds, etc.) to try to get the optical tech onto devices sometime in 2010. [Intel]