There are numerous You Tube videos that show you how to use the semiconductor laser from a DVD burner to make what is in essence a flashlight that sets stuff on fire.
(Read: DANGEROUS toy)
if it is powerful to ignite things it could easily cause permanent damage to your eye.
The laser inside a DVD or blueray “Burner” is a Class-3 Laser device, typically less than 500mW power output, but the DVD/BD drive itself is considered to be a class 1 device because it is not normally possible to be exposed to the beam as it is inside an enclosure.
(EXPLANATION of Laser Safety HERE: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laser_Class )
Somewhere around here I have a powerful Class IV Laser that I removed from an GCMS machine (the machine was junk but the laser still worked) it is powerful enough to cut aluminum foil like it was a sharp knife… even incidental reflections from non-matt surfaces could cause eye damage.
Burning holes in FULL pop cans brings new meaning to the phrase "POP can"
Insects that interrupt the beam (albeit briefly) simply explode.
Lasers other than “Laser pointers” are not to be “played with” without knowing the dangers and exercising care…
as a simple answer to the original question? Yes, it can, though the real answer is somewhat more complicated.