Teleportation is the process of moving objects (or more likely with present techniques, fundamental particles) from one place to another by encoding information about the object, transmitting the information to another place, such as on a radio signal, and creating a copy of the original object in the new location. The use of teleportation has traditionally been found only in science fiction, but the theory and experimentation of quantum teleportation has been of interest to physicists.
The use of teleportation as a means of transport for humans still has considerable unresolved technical and philosophical issues, such as exactly how to record the human body sufficiently accurately and also be able to reconstruct it, and whether destroying a human in one place and recreating a copy elsewhere would provide a sufficient experience of continuity of existence. Many of the questions are shared with the concept of mind transfer.
It is not clear if duplicating a human would require reproduction of the exact quantum state, requiring quantum teleportation which necessarily destroys the original, or whether macroscopic measurements would suffice. In the non-destructive version, hypothetically a new copy of the individual is created with each teleportation, with only the copy subjectively experiencing the teleportation. Technology of this type would have many other applications, such as virtual medicine (manipulating the stored data to create a copy better than the original), travelling into the future (creating a copy many years after the information was stored), or backup copies (creating a copy from recently stored information if the original was involved in a mishap.)
See also: Transporter (Star Trek).
In religious, occult, and esoteric literature, teleportation is the instantaneous movement of a person or object from one place to another, by supernatural or psychic means rather than technological ones. For instance, in Acts 8:39, after Philip evangelized the Ethiopian finance minister, "Spirit of the Lord grabbed Philip, and the eunuch saw him no more, for he went on his way rejoicing. Philip found himself in Ashdod."