Take a Look: Researchers Aim to Create Vision-Correcting Displays
If you wear glasses or contacts, you’ll want to get a look at this.
When we were kids, our parents told us not to sit too close to the TV screen, because it would ruin our eyes. Today, thanks to scientists at the University of California at Berkeley, and MIT, watching television -- or your computer or smartphone -- could actually help you see better.
That's right. The researchers have developed a display technology that adjusts for "refractive errors in the eye," that are usually fixed with glasses, contacts and surgery. Instead of glasses, the correcting effect comes from your screen, which uses an algorithm to make the image appear as if at the distance where it is the sharpest for a person with poor eyesight.
For now, the tech is still in the early prototype phase, but the goal of the team behind it is to be able to personalize it for any user's prescription. They've found that they can use the display to adjust for conditions like myopia and astigmatism and they are looking to find ways to integrate the technology into phones, laptops, tablets and even car GPS's.
Here’s a look:
In a release from MIT, one of the display's creator's, research scientist Gordon Wetzstein, says that while it isn’t an all-purpose solution, it is generally less "invasive." And, of course, "we spend a huge portion of our time interacting with the digital world,” increasingly in front of displays.
Someday you’ll be able to sit back, relax and take off your glasses when in front of your television. Or a computer or your phone. As the creators say, it’s as if the display was wearing glasses or contacts, not you.
We’re not sure how it works when different people with different eye prescriptions are looking at the same screen, but the technology still sounds pretty cool.
Nina Zipkin is a staff writer at Entrepreneur.com. She frequently covers leadership, media, tech, startups, culture and workplace trends.