Technology is magical, and now more than ever, magic is technological

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Illusionist Franz Harary embraced engineering when he wowed audiences 15 years ago by making the space shuttle disappear. He used a glass that becomes reflective when electrically charged, letting you produce and vanish objects by turning their reflections on and off.

Today, magic shows up most often in the form of electronics. A deck of cards embedded with RFID tags, for example, transmit their identities to an electronic decoder hidden on the magician. But the ubiquity of technology makes it harder than ever for magicians to stay current. If something seems impossible today, audiences just write it off to technology.