When portable MRIs became portable enough, they could photograph a dream. This was monumental as people finally understood sleep very well.
(Note: The background section of this page uses most of the words from the portable MRIs page of Terra Futura to save time.)
Research into mind reading, a.k.a. telepathy, had been going on since 1882 when the Society for Psychical Research was founded. This society became known for exposing frauds. The founder of the Rhine Institute, Dr. Joseph Banks Rhine, also tried to find evidence of this phenomenon. None was found. In 1972, the CIA started Star Gate, a project on psychic warfare. Needless to say, it produced little information, and, by 1995, it was shut down. However, there was evidence that extra-sensory perception in some ways was real. Identical twins seemed to feel what was happening to each other. The most famous were the Psychic Twins, Linda and Terry Jamison, who were known to have predicted the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks three years in advance. This evidence was controversial. As a matter of fact, technology could do it better.
By the end of the Cold War, technology that could read a person's mind was becoming commonplace in science labs. These included electroencephalography and magnetic resonance imaging. By 2012, electroencephalography (EEG) was making its way into brain-computer interfaces that could do simple tasks. One notable application was in security. EEGs could detect an echo of a person's thoughts allowing the police to know whether someone is plotting a terrorist attack or not. There was one problem. EEGs could get confused by thought pattern similar but not quite like terrorist attack.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was different. MRI machines were different from EEGs in that they tapped directly into the brain. MRIs could detect the amount of oxygen in the blood in the brain. This MRIs more accurate. MRI machines were being used to help find out how the brain worked but not much else. MRI machines had bulky magnets which made them expensive. Overtime, however, MRIs would become more portable. This would revolutionize fighting crime.
Crime-fighting was never easy. It was hard to catch the criminal. Sometimes, it was hard for people to remember who committed the crime. A machine that read the person's mind would get down to details. The MRI was the best bet for this, but there was a problem. As said above, MRI machines were expensive because of the bulky superconducting magnets. There was a solution. The atomic magnetometer was a small chip that used lasers to detect the interaction between alkali metals and magnetic fields. This allowed MRIs to be miniaturized. This revolutionized crime-fighting. Criminals could not lie now. Crime-fighting was not the only application of Portable MRIs. Another application was photographing a dream.
Tech Level: 12
When it came to deciphering an MRI pattern in the early 21st century, there was a problem. It could not reproduce the actual image of what a person was thinking about. In the early 21st century, scientists could show their test subjects a pinpoint of light and record where it was stored. Eventually, they had a map of pinpoints of light stored in the brain that were then projected on a 10 X 10 grid. As time went on, the number of pixels was increased. Add to that the miniaturization of MRI machines. As MRI machines became smaller, the pictures became better. By the late 21st century, it became clear that a dream could now be photographed. This was a good tool for finding out more about sleep. It also worked well in solving crimes as it could easily tell if someone was lying since sleep and memory are connected. But this work which had been started in 1998 would eventually allow people to have the power of the gods.