Whether they're correcting poor vision or drawing your gaze towards Sean Connery's endangered crotch, lasers' functions have generally been limited to the visual. Well, no longer, thanks to Soundlazer, a just-invented speaker that shoots concentrated beams of sound that only those in their path can hear. In addition to the obvious "does this mean I can play Wham! without others hearing me?", you'll probably have two immediate questions:
How? The "parametric speaker" produces ultrasonic carrier waves, which are far smaller, and thus more directional & concentrated, than the normal waves produced by most speakers. Despite being the size of a chalkboard eraser, this thing can shoot these "beams" 20-30ft (even bouncing them off walls) without the sound dissipating throughout the entire room.
Why? It can process sound from your iPod or basically anything with a jack, so the options are sort of limitless: point it at your pillow and it becomes an alarm clock that will wake up only you, point it at your loveseat and watch TV while your incredibly nerdy loved ones read on the couch, or rock out at work without disturbing others, who will, by the way, think you're totally disturbed. The creators also point out that the Lazer presents some incredible opportunities for pranks, if -- like Sean Connery despite Goldfinger's best try -- you've got the balls.