It's been stuff of pipe dreams since Tesla's work with electricity, but those crazy folk at Intel have demonstrated wireless power at its annual Intel Developers Forum in San Francisco.

Based on principles proposed by MIT physicists, Intel says its researchers have been working on a Wireless Resonant Energy Link (WREL) that now works.

Intel's chief technology officer Justin Rattner demonstrated the new tech by powering a 60-watt light bulb without the use of a plug or wire of any kind, which is more than is needed for a typical laptop.

The technology opens up a world of possibilities and has the power to transform all our gadgets of the future as it removes the need to plug devices into a power socket to recharge.

Intel cited the idea of being "able to walk into an airport or room with your laptop and instead of consuming battery, it is recharged".

And now the science bit:

The technology, say Intel, relies on strongly coupled resonators, a principle similar to the way a trained singer can shatter a glass using her voice.

At the receiving resonator's natural frequency, energy is absorbed efficiently, just as a glass absorbs acoustic energy at its natural frequency.

But don't expect it in the latest laptop or mobile phone soon. Intel say there are still many engineering challenges remaining, probably judging from the picture, how to make it fit into a laptop.

We will keep you posted.