Definitions for "compact disk"
Keywords:  phonograph, pits, optical, laser, disk
a disk-shaped optical data storage medium approximately 4-3/4 in. in diameter, which stores binary data as microscopic nonreflective holes or pits in an otherwise reflective surface, and is recorded and played back by rotation in an electronic device containing a laser. It is often referred to by its abbreviation CD. It is a type of optical data storage medium. Compact disks are used for recordings of music as well as of data for computer applications.
The most popular format for conveying music and data currently available. It is among the first digital media to take over from the analog formats of phonograph records and tapes; coming to the market in the early 1980's. Developed by Phillips, Sony, and Pioneer, it records information on the now familiar shiny discs by deforming the inner metal foil on the disc with tiny micro pits burned in by a laser. These pits taken together, form a binary digital code, which when converted to bits, then bytes, can recreate the original information, such as audio. It's superiority as a format, consists of the fact that the process gets around the such problems as: noise, hiss, pops, transducer irregularities, and other audible problems that made analog carriers a less than fully high fidelity mode. Dynamic range exceeds 100 decibels, a sufficient soft/loud difference to make the reproduction very lifelike. Frequency response is at the theoretical limits of human hearing and unwanted aural artifacts are generally below the threshold of perception. The only significant improvement is the DVD borne addition of multiple channels, to recreate the original sonic environment.
A relatively small optical disk on which text, data, sounds, visual images, and the like can be recorded digitally and then scanned, decoded, and transmitted by a laser beam to a computer monitor, television set, or playback device. See also AUDIOVISUAL RECORDS, OPTICAL DISK.