Stock traders take to lasers, but not in a fun way


There is another species of man for whom the word lag is nothing short of blasphemy.

No, not hardcore Farmville Call of Duty players, but stock traders.

Stock traders, in an ideal world, want to transact and finalise their transactions instantaneously, lest they miss out on the next big thing in trading. In the US, traders use microwave data transmissions which allow for transmissions to take place between Chicago and New York, which are 1 300km apart, in less than 4 milliseconds. But, as you might have guessed, this is not good enough.

And so dawns the age of lasers. A company called Anova Technologies will be arranging and operating lasers that will be deployed at the data centres of New York and the Nasdaq market, and fitted with a flexible mirror system that adjusts thousands of time a second, providing a much more stable data transmission configuration than the current microwave transmissions, and should also, in theory, allow for even quicker data transmissions.

According to the Wall Street Journal many trading firms are interested in the technology. Of course, that interest solidifies only when and if it it can be shown that lasers can cut down the transmission times and speed up transactions.

Source: The Verge


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