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August 21, 2013

In This Edition

Heads Up
Wearable Display for Swimmers

A Light Show for Eyeglasses

Sight Seeing
A Telescope for Your Eye

Next Dimension
Sony's 3D Solution for Ophthalmic Surgery


Heads Up

Instabeat Makes a Splash

By Andrew Karp

Runners and bikers have wearable devices to monitor their performance, but why not swimmers?

That thought inspired Hind Hobeika, a swimmer and entrepreneur, to come up with a solution. Working with a team of developers, she has created Instabeat, a swim goggle-mounted monitor that tracks, stores, and displays instant feedback of your heart rate to reach your training goals. The device, which can attach to any pair of swim goggles, reads your heart rate from the temporal artery, getting rid of the chest belt used in other monitoring devices.



Party Like It's 2099

Many baby boomers fondly recall the psychedelic light shows that accompanied '60s rock bands like the Jefferson Airplane. Now, a group of tech savvy Texans has developed a light show for today's young music lovers using the medium of eyeglasses. They call their product Dropshades, and tout it as "the official party accessory of the future."

This may not be farfetched. Dropshades' audio responsive technology "dances" to the beat of music. Using a tiny microphone connected to a signal processor, incoming sound is translated across twelve horizontal lights. The lights, made from electroluminescent wire, cascade up and down to the beat of the music. The company says DropShades can be used at any volume, and users can quickly adjust the sensitivity.


Sight Seeing

New Contact Lens Design May Improve Sight of Patients With Macular Degeneration

Contact lenses correct many people's eyesight but do nothing to improve the blurry vision of those suffering from age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of blindness among older adults in the western world. That's because simply correcting the eye's focus cannot restore the central vision lost from a retina damaged by AMD.

Now a team of DARPA-funded researchers from the U.S. and Switzerland led by University of California San Diego Professor Joseph Ford has created a slim, telescopic contact lens that can switch between normal and magnified vision. With refinements, the system could offer AMD patients a relatively unobtrusive way to enhance their vision. The team recently reported its work in the Optical Society's (OSA) open-access journal Optics Express.



Next Dimension

Sony Electronics 3D Ophthalmic Solutions Aid Surgeons

3D vision systems are becoming an increasingly important tool in operating rooms. Ophthalmic surgeons in particular are finding the technology to be especially useful for visualizing the eye's anatomy.

Recently, a new 3D imaging system for surgical microscopes developed by Sony Electronics has been attracting the attention of ophthalmic surgeons. The technology was demonstrated last winter at a symposium on cataract surgery in Sarasota, Fla. Richard Mackool Sr., MD, director of The Mackool Eye Institute, presented two surgical cases that were captured by Sony's 3D camera and recorder. The cases, titled "PXF: Zonule Friendly PE" and "PC Protection during PE and Cortex Removal," were presented and displayed on Sony 42-inch 3D professional monitors to approximately 500 surgeons attending the event.


Andrew Karp, Group Editor, Lenses and Technology

Send us news about new optical technologies, provide us with subjects and/or questions for a future Eye² Q&A or let us know what topics you'd like to see covered. Contact Eye²'s Editor Andrew Karp at akarp@jobson.com.

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