A new laser pointer is the closest thing we've ever seen to someone actually creating a lightsaber, and the device is a lot cheaper than you might think.
Ever since Star Wars first took moviegoers by surprise, people have been dreaming of owning their very own lightsabers. While the general public was assured that such technology might be possible in the distant future, it seems that "the distant future" actually translates to "33 years down the line" since a new laser pointer comes pretty close to the famed Jedi weapon's potential.
The Spyder III Pro Arctic, created and sold by Shanghai-based Wicked Lasers, is clearly meant to appeal to fans of George Lucas's films. The beam is about 1,000 times more powerful than the type found in a standard laser pointer, which is actually kind of dangerous.
This is a "Class 4" laser, which means it's far from a toy. According to Wikipedia, "by definition, a class-4 laser can burn the skin, in addition to potentially devastating and permanent eye damage as a result of direct or diffuse beam viewing. These lasers may ignite combustible materials, and thus may represent a fire risk."
Wicked Lasers admits that the beam from the Pro Arctic can cause severe and permanent damage to one's eyes, and anyone buying the gadget has to read and agree to a hazard warning before they can finalize the purchase.
The laser is available for $197.97, surprisingly less than one might expect to pay for what is - essentially - a portable industrial laser. On one hand, I totally want one of these things, for no other reason than for the novelty of owning it. On the other hand, I'm not exactly a fan of the idea that the jerks who use laser pointers to annoy people at concerts and movie theaters suddenly have affordable access to something that could potentially cause a plane crash.
Source: Geeks Are Sexy