A technology that uses glass or less expensive clear plastic threads (fibers) to transmit information. A fiber optic cable consists of a bundle of glass (or plastic) threads, each of which is capable of transmitting messages modulated onto light waves.
Fiber optics has several advantages over traditional copper communications lines:
# Fiber optic cables have a much greater bandwidth. This means that they have the potential to carry more information.
* Fiber optic cables are less susceptible to electromagnetic interference.
# Fiber optic cables are much thinner and lighter than copper electrical wires.
* Data can be transmitted digitally (the natural form of computer data) rather than in analog form.
The main disadvantage of fiber optics is that the cables are more fragile than wire and are difficult to splice.
Fiber optics is a particularly popular technology for local-area networks. In addition, telephone companies are steadily replacing traditional telephone lines with fiber optic cables. In the future, almost all communications will employ fiber optics.