Bionic Eye
August 29, 2012 5:31 PM   Subscribe

I can see the future - with a bionic eye Early days yet but "spots of light" is a great start for somebody that's blind.
posted by milkwood (8 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
wow. that is super cool.

i wonder what caused her blindness and if that has anything to do with how the device works.

this is about as awesome as that thing where they made the bionic arm that could feel things and that woman could feel a sensation for the first time with "fingers".

i remember seeing a video of either this woman or another one when it was still being developed and they hooked her up in the lab and the look on her face when the fingers touched the sandpaper was just crazy. i think it might have been in a pbs nova special.
posted by sio42 at 5:57 PM on August 29, 2012

This is really cool. Thanks for posting it. A somewhat related article Synthetic synapse could take us one step closer to an artificial brain.

Researchers in Japan have shown that it's possible to mimic synaptic function with nanotechnology, a breakthrough that could result in not just artificial neural networks, but fixes for the human brain as well.

The day may be coming when failing synaptic systems could be patched with a device similar to this one, in which biological function is offloaded to a synthetic one.

This may be stretching it, I'm sure. To truly understand what is going on in the brain, and especially how consciousness works, I think we would have to get to the stage where a 'brain prosthesis' or artificial neural network could be interfaced to synapses in the brain.
posted by Golden Eternity at 6:49 PM on August 29, 2012

This is neat. I am so ready for the damned Tleilaxu eyes to become a thing.
posted by Coatlicue at 7:26 PM on August 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

It's not clear what the novelty here is. This kind of thing has been around for years. The ARGUS phase one trials started over a decade ago.
posted by mr_roboto at 8:02 PM on August 29, 2012

sio42: retinitis pigmentosa, according to the ABC report.

mr_roboto: again, according to the ABC report, this one differs because the implant is positioned behind the retina, not in front of or in the surface of the retina.
posted by Pinback at 9:14 PM on August 29, 2012

so, is the "bionic eye" the headgear she's wearing?
posted by luvcraft at 10:58 PM on August 29, 2012

I remember reading (a decade or so ago) about another bionic vision prosthesis that was a wearable video glasses apparatus for a guy who had straight lost both his eyes, and the video fed through a cable that connected to a port drilled into his temple or something. The guy had lost his eyes in two seperate industrial accidents, as I recall. And the trials were being done in Greenland, or Iceland maybe? I think the article was in Wired, and it might have been a heap of nonsense or just a dream I had. Is any of this ringing a bell with anyone?
posted by FatherDagon at 10:22 AM on August 30, 2012

Not sure about that. I have seen stuff on Intra-Cortical Visual Prosthesis, but I don't think they've been tested yet. This one is a computer chip implanted in the visual cortex that communicates and receives power through an RF link. Again, it doesn't seem like they expect it to do much yet, except activate some spots or primitive shapes in the previously blind patients visual field.
posted by Golden Eternity at 12:02 PM on August 30, 2012

« Older Ttio the Boston Terrier loves his ball.   |   "Great Shades of Elvis!" - Perry White, Ordained... Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments