Technology in the 21st century

Who said smartphones or laser technology had the sole stronghold on augmented reality technology?

An enterprising new company, Innovega is developing a contact lens called the iOptik lens that will provide the crucial step necessary to perceive an augmented, superimposed 3-D virtual reality.

It can also enhance your vision as you’re seeing normal reality. Using nanotechnology, the contact lenses allow users to perceive both reality and information provided by the Internet or another source.

With these contact lenses, the user can view the world naturally: Their eyes can move normally and there aren’t any cumbersome goggles to hinder movement or perception.

Such innovations could prove very profitable to companies which specialise in the development of contemporary eyewear as interest in emerging new developments in technology snowball.

But Dr Catharine Chisholm from the British Contact Lense Association (BCLA) believes that although the new developments are interesting, more needs to be known about how they would work in practice, before hitting the mass market.

She said: “BCLA members are currently very interested in the potential for new contact lenses incorporating electronic elements. They may have a wide range of uses – from the monitoring of disease (diabetes, glaucoma) through to the presentation of information for occupational (head-up display armed forces/fighter pilots) or recreational uses (artificial reality).

“One issue, if such lenses become available, is who will fit them? When it comes to medical devices, such as lenses to monitor glaucoma or diabetes, specialist contact lens practitioners can work with medical practitioners to fit and monitor the lenses and the health of the eye. Such lenses may only be used for short periods of time anyway.”

The iOptik lens could very well change the way people perceive and integrate technology in their lives. It could also change the way consumers interact with technology in their everyday lives, although it will undoubtedly take many more years of investigation before they can truly be marketed to the general population.

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