I was wondering, is it possible to use electrical charges and/or EM waves to induce imagery directly into a person's mind?

I got this idea because since almost everybody dreams, and dreams are images created by the brain, i wondered if it was possible for an outside source to forcibly make someone see a different image without harming them.


1 Answer 1


In principle there's no reason why we shouldn't be able to do so. In practice, we do not seem to be anywhere near able to do so.

We are barely able to decode natural images from fMRI information, and before you can hope to induce imagery you should usually first be able to decode it.

  • $\begingroup$ This answer isn't all that different from answering a question like "Is it possible to travel faster than the speed of light?" with "In principle there's no reason why we shouldn't be able to do so" ...when physics kind of gets in the way it gets quite messy. $\endgroup$
    – Bryan Krause
    Jul 16, 2018 at 14:28
  • $\begingroup$ Except we already know that brains can be stimulated in the right ways so why would it not be possible by stimulating the appropriate regions directly? $\endgroup$
    – qeschaton
    Jul 16, 2018 at 14:57
  • $\begingroup$ I just think you are underselling the distance between current capabilities and what is necessary. $\endgroup$
    – Bryan Krause
    Jul 16, 2018 at 16:05

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