It's hard for magnetic data tapes to stand out from the crowd in an era when it's easy to load up on legions of hard drives. However, Sony might have managed that rare feat with nano-sized tape tech that stores much more than off-the-shelf hardware. By optimizing how it sputters argon ions on to film to create magnetic material, the company has produced "nano-grained" tape that's 74 times denser than what you see today; at 185TB per cartridge, it makes even a 5TB hard disk seem quaint. Sony's breakthrough won't come to your home PC, but it could prove a big help to supercomputers and your favorite internet services -- many of them need high-capacity tape storage just to keep up with demand.
[Image credit: Theilr, Flickr]