It was on this date in 1981 the Compact Disc was first introduced. To impress your friends here's some background on the compact disc (CD), it's a small plastic disc used for the storage of digital data. As originally developed for audio systems, the sound signal is sampled at a rate of 44,100 times a second, then each sample is measured and digitally encoded on the 4 3/4 in (12 cm) disc as a series of microscopic pits on an otherwise polished surface. Also according to infoplease.com the disc is covered with a transparent coating so that it can be read by a laser beam. Since nothing touches the encoded portion, the CD is not worn out by the playing process. The CD offered other advantages over the phonograph record and recording tape—smaller size, greater dynamic range, extremely low distortion—and met with rapid consumer acceptance; the CD became the music carrier of choice by 1991, when sales exceeded those of audiocassettes.

Speaking about things that happened today in history.  In 1989: The U.S. issued patent #4,834,212 for the Mouth Muffler, a sound-absorbing device that a person may yell or scream into without disturbing other people.