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Isolinear rods were long, thin and cylindrical in shape, having a translucent dark amber tint. These small rods interfaced with information storage and processing devices which were employed by the Cardassian Union aboard their starships and other facilities. They were also used aboard the Bajoran, formerly Cardassian, facility of Deep Space 9. The rods were similar in principle to the Starfleet-issued isolinear chips used aboard Federation starships. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine)
Isolinear rods are color-coded with labels that correspond with what particular information they pertain to. For instance, white-labeled rods contain data relating to engineering system controls while red-labeled contain library and information storage. (DS9: "Shadowplay")