Exactly a quarter of a century ago today the first compact discs were produced in Germany. Who'd have thought that a recording of ABBA's The Visitors would be groundbreaking? (Apart from Benny and Björn, naturally.)

Given that you can now fit a house on to a high-definition DVD, we tend to forget how big a deal the CD's launch was. I've never been convinced that the sound is any better than a top-quality tape cassette, but I'm sorry grandad, vinyl doesn't even come close. And 5in compact discs are smaller, more user-friendly and harder to scratch than vinyl records.

Although not as resilient as the BBC's Tomorrow's World tried to convince us - whatever else CDs are, they are not suitable vessels for jam.

Buying CDs changed the way we listened to music, too. The music CD offered the ability to shuffle albums or jump straight to favoured tracks, which may explain why I have so many of the damn things I could build a bus shelter.

And the real genius of CDs is the fact that they can be used for music, photos or data... well any digital file, really. You might get better sleeve notes on vinyl, but you can't store software code on a Hawkwind album.

And although digital music and the internet has bitten a huge chunk out of CD music sales, I don't know many households without a stack of blank discs for photos and suchlike.

So charge up your Blu-ray Disc drive, and raise a toast to the humble CD. Twenty-five years young, and still it endures.