Where would Harry be without his invisibility cloak?
In detention, in Snape’s office, most likely.
What once was considered magical is now scientific reality, as scientists just figured out how to hide more stuff in broad daylight. There have been invisibility devices of a sort before: a fancy projection system (think the green screen weatherman) that worked like optical camouflage to render you invisible; stealth technology that made an F-117A bomber look like a pigeon on radar (although I never understood why a pigeon moving at Mach speeds wouldn’t be, well, suspicious).
But more recently, scientists have been cooking up metamaterials that can literally bend electromagetic waves (using nano materials that interacted at tiny size scales with the waves). But those generally only worked on small objects and only masked microwaves and infrared light. Which is great if you’re trying to hide a button from a lizard, but hiding wayward young wizards from their possibly evil wizard instructors was a ways off.
Still the idea of bending light was a major breakthrough.
Well, those scientists have been busy, and now use these metamaterials bend light at all wavelengths, including visible light, making it truly possible to hide something in broad daylight (at least from our eyes or other visual detectors). These are true cloaking devices. Now simply coating an object with the right material can hide it from view.
I’m waiting for them to figure out how to apply it to a blanket that is light weight enough to sneak into the library.
The only question would be, do you call it an invisibility cloak? Because I think we need a new name for the real thing.