Demo: Can Wireless Technology Give You X-Ray Vision?

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MIT professor and wireless technology expert Dina Katabi is challenging people to think beyond conventional uses of wireless technology and dive into the realm of comic books.

’We are so used to wireless technologies being used to transmit data,’ Katabi said during a talk at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge.

Katabi said the capabilities of wireless technology extend far beyond those parameters.

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’What if wireless technologies could actually give you X-ray vision?’ she proposed.

Katabi demonstrated a technology developed at MIT: A wireless signal is transmitted, traverses a wall and reflects off of a person’s body. Katabi’s technology analyzes minute reflections to extract movements on the opposite side of a wall.

Through the technology, a person’s movements could be tracked from another room, without that person having any sort of cellphone, sensor or other device on their body. The method can track hand motions and gestures as well.

’There are so many applications -- the applications are unlimited,’ said Katabi.

Katabi demonstrated how a person could turn off a lamp, or turn on a television, just by pointing at it.

So while today, wireless technology supplies wire-free Internet, in the future, it could also grant normal people super powers.