Light Used for Wireless Data Transmission
Researchers at the Fudan University in Shanghai have demonstrated the latest technology they are working on, using light to transmit wireless data instead of radio waves. As the use of Wi-Fi becomes more widespread this research could provide breakthroughs in wireless data as it "gets around the congestion issue and could be 10 times faster than traditional Wi-Fi." By using a very common household item, the light bulb, data can be transferred at higher frequencies and without any special equipment. A technology standard, Li-Fi, has been proposed and works by first sending data to a LED light bulb and then flickering it up to billions of times per second. The flickering is then decoded by another computer using a camera that captures the light flicker. You might have guessed the limitation of this technology, the computers need to be able to see the light bulb to interpret the flickering. It will be interesting to see if this research can be developed to the point where it becomes useful over a wider range.