Laser sights are a fine example of the art of technology improving everyday life. The technology has been adapted from military use and has been available to the general public for several years.
Crimson Trace, LaserLyte, and LaserMax all are makers of quality laser sights that use the latest in technology. Basically, the beam is directed at the target. In some instances this beam is visible, the point always is. To reduce the visibility of the beam itself manufacturers may use an infrared laser and couple them with night vision scopes. The beams may be either red or green. Different companies may make one or the other or both. Depending on your personal preference either color works well. Green sights have even gained preference, as the light is more highly visible to the human eye in a variety of lighting conditions.
An exciting application of laser sights is the lasergrip. They have been shown to actually decrease fatalities when used for self-defense. The grip is activated by just squeezing the handgun as you normally would. This method is called "instinctive" activation and makes it easier to use during critical situations. The lasergrip can be installed onto most handguns with just a few simple tools. The sight shows where the bullet will hit when the gun is fired. They are used on handguns both for self-defense and by law enforcement. They also offer calibration adjustment for elevation and windage.
Outside of self-defense, military, and police work, laser sights have other uses. They are even available for archery. The concept is the same as when used on handguns. Many states allow for handgun hunting and in these states the lasergrips are great to use when shooting. While the lasergrip may be just a hair off on occasion, it is generally so close it will not make a difference in the shot. Often, though, for self-defense purposes, they are calibrated for Center-of-Mass shooting.
Lasergrips can also be used as trainers. Simply aim the firearm as you normally would and then activate the beam. Does the dot appear where you were aiming? The key to accurate shooting is practice and using the laser is a great way to practice without wasting ammunition. This sort of practice can even be taken away from the range. Just remember to follow all safety precautions, including unloading your firearm, using eye protection, and even after unloading, always treat your firearm as though it were loaded.
When shopping for laser sights take into consideration the conditions you will be shooting in. Be sure and know which firearm you will be installing it onto and discuss the needs with the salesperson. Your salesperson should be able to direct you to the firearm accessories that best suit your needs.