For the first time, scientists have been able to send a simple mental message from one person to another without any contact between the two, thousands of miles apart in India and France.
Research led by experts at Harvard University shows technology can be used to transmit information from one person's brain to another's even, as in this case, if they are thousands of miles away.
"It is kind of technological realization of the dream of telepathy, but it is definitely not magical," Giulio Ruffini, a theoretical physicist and co-author of the research, told AFP by phone from Barcelona.
"We are using technology to interact electromagnetically with the brain."
For the experiment, one person wearing a wireless, Internet-linked electroencephalogram or EEG would think a simple greeting, like "hola," or "ciao."
A computer translated the words into digital binary code, presented by a series of 1s or 0s.
Then, this message was emailed from India to France, and delivered via robot to the receiver, who through non-invasive brain stimulation could see flashes of light in their peripheral vision.
The subjects receiving the message did not hear or see the words themselves, but were correctly able to report the flashes of light that corresponded to the message.