Aussie whiz-kids can cram 1.6TB on a DVD-sized disc, go Outback tonight

Don't take it personally, Blu-ray -- we still love you and all, but there's just something dreamy about baking 1.6TB of information onto a blank piece of optical media we can actually afford. According to a new report, a crew of researchers at Swinburne University of Technology in Australia have exploited the properties of a certain gold nano-rod that will theoretically enable them to shove 300 DVDs worth of data onto a single disc. Calling the method "five-dimensional optical recording," the technique "employs nanometer-scale particles of gold as a recording medium," and according to developers, it's primed for commercialization. Essentially, these gurus have figured out how to add a spectral and polarization dimension, giving them the ability to record information "in a range of different color wavelengths on the same physical disc." As for the chances this actually makes it out of the laboratory and into the lives of real humans? Slim, Jim.

[Thanks, Sam]