I don't understand quantum mechanics. Physicists don't even really understand it. But somehow, information was successfully teleported over a full meter, which means we're that much closer to making Star Trek a dorktastic reality.
A team at the University of Maryland was able to successfully teleport a quantum state (like spin or polarization) from one atom to another over the distance of one meter. How they did it is incredibly complicated: the explanation sounds like half advanced physics and half existential philosophy (i.e. "each photon is in an unknowable superposition of states"). But the end result is that the information doesn't travel the distance between the two atoms. It merely appears at the second and disappears from the first.
The tech is still very young, so there isn't much speculation on, say, when I can stop taking that awful 14-hour bus from Philly to Montreal in favor of teleporting. But it is suggested that this kind of instant transfer of information could be useful in mass exchanges of data, like the Internet. [Live Science]