A team of researchers at the ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories in Kyoto, Japan recently developed techniques which allow them to read a person's dreams using brain scans.

As soon as the participants drift off, the researchers wake them up and ask a series of questions to get an idea of what they were starting to dream about. This process is repeated 200 times for each participant, and each time they categorize what they have seen. The researchers then developed a database of images linked to the person’s brain activity. The images were grouped under an umbrella of a single visual category. The results were accurate around 60% of the time.

"We were able to reveal dream content from brain activity during sleep, which was consistent with the subjects' verbal reports," one of the researchers said. "I had a strong belief that dream decoding should be possible at least for particular aspects of dreaming ... I was not very surprised by the results, but excited."

[via Gizmodo