Feeds

Researchers share video contact lens vision

Rabbit beta testers demand wider content selection

Seven Steps to Software Security

Boffins in America have finally put aside childish things and set themselves to the task of genuinely benefiting humanity, according to reports. The US brainboxes believe they are well on the way to designing contact lenses with video screens in them.

The technology was showcased at a microsystems engineering conference yesterday by Harvey Ho, late of the University of Washington and now working at the Sandia National Lab in California. Ho had done much of his research while a grad student at Washington, supervised by UW prof Babak Parviz.

The prototype video contact lens

How you'll see the future, in future.

"Looking through a completed lens, you would see what the display is generating superimposed on the world outside," said Parviz yesterday.

"People may find all sorts of applications for it that we have not thought about. Our goal is to demonstrate the basic technology and make sure it works and that it's safe."

According to the university, the "lenses were tested on rabbits for up to 20 minutes and the animals showed no adverse effects". The testing was probably quite limited, though, as the video contact lenses are at a rather early stage of development. Thus far, the prototype equipment contains only very basic circuitry and a few LEDs rather than a usable display, and it lacks a power source which would let it actually light up.

Content options in no-pixels-at-all format being limited, we suspect that the rabbit beta testers may have found the experience unsatisfying. But Parviz reckons the kit has potential to move forward quickly. He says that future versions could draw power from RF induction and/or "solar cells placed on the lens", apparently.

"There is a large area outside of the transparent part of the eye that we can use for placing instrumentation," added the prof, addressing concerns that the necessary circuitry might obstruct users' normal vision.

HD vid contact lenses are a while off, seemingly, but more basic displays - maybe more in the style of old-school calculators and digital watches than pixel grids - could be up and running "fairly quickly," according to Parviz. It might not be that long before you can get caller-ID from your cellphone or suchlike right in your eye, without resorting to William Gibson style replacement cyberpunk eyes.

Lordy. Read the university press release here. ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 claimed lives of HIV/AIDS cure scientists
Researchers, advocates, health workers among those on shot-down plane
World Solar Challenge contender claims new speed record
One charge sees Sunswift travel 500kms at over 100 km/h
SMELL YOU LATER, LOSERS – Dumbo tells rats, dogs... humans
Junk in the trunk? That's what people have
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.