The results of a comprehensive study of optical interactions with frequency-selective recording materials are reported along with ancillary results related to high-speed tuning and reference-free stabilization of associated lasers. Frequency-selective recording materials provide the physical basis for time-space or 4D holography wherein the full spatial and temporal information contained in an optical signal can be stored and/or processed. It is shown that 4D holographic recall signals can be substantially stronger than previously believed possible. Innovative external-cavity diode laser designs supportive of very high-speed laser tuning and dynamic stabilization are also reported. Preliminary work on the use of composite grating devices to emulate the functionality normally associated with frequency-selective materials is also presented. Composite grating devices provide a basis for robust optical signal processing operative over extensive ranges of bandwidths and are entirely free of the constraints normal associated with intrinsically frequency-selective materials.