The sudden availability of DNA sequencing technologies that rapidly produce vast amounts of sequence information has triggered a paradigm shift in genomics, enabling massively parallel surveying of complex nucleic acid populations. The diversity of applications to which these technologies have already been applied demonstrates the immense range of cellular processes and properties that can now be studied at the single-base resolution. These include genome resequencing and polymorphism discovery, mutation mapping, DNA methylation, histone modifications, transcriptome sequencing, gene discovery, alternative splicing identification, small RNA profiling, DNA-protein, and possibly even protein-protein interactions. Thus, these deep sequencing technologies offer plant biologists unprecedented opportunities to increase the understanding of the functions and dynamics of plant cells and populations. © 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.