Thursday, November 12, 2009

Eye Phone

Anyone who has read Vernor Vinge's Rainbows End will not be surprised that science fiction is on the verge of becoming science fact. Says New Scientist:
A contact lens that harvests radio waves to power an LED is paving the way for a new kind of display. The lens is a prototype of a device that could display information beamed from a mobile device.

Realising that display size is increasingly a constraint in mobile devices, Babak Parviz at the University of Washington, in Seattle, hit on the idea of projecting images into the eye from a contact lens.
His research involves embedding nanoscale and microscale electronic devices in substrates like paper or plastic. He also wears contact lenses. "It was a matter of putting the two together," he says.
Great. Wait till people start driving with these things. And I'm sure I don't want to have all those horrible flashing animated banner ads flashing right in my eyes. (Retina-based advertising?) I like the idea in theory, but personally I think I'll take a pass.

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