Magnetic fields are pretty nifty for levitating stuff
, carving sponge-like thingamajigs
and, of course, data storage
. But an international team led by the University of York
in the UK has figured out a way to replace magnetic fields for the latter by using ultra-short heat pulses instead. Conventional thinking typically dictates that an external magnetic field is required to store data on a magnetic medium. By using heat, however, researchers were able to record terabytes of information per second in a way that is also more energy-efficient compared to current hard drive
technology. As for the time it'll take for the tech to make it to market, well, we have a feeling it won't be as fast.