There has been a clear progression in our relationship with technology over the decades. Our computers started out as massive, multi-block machines that required teams of people to see to them. Then they became mainframes, minicomputers and then the microcomputers we know as desktop PCs today.
Now many people walk around with a small computer in their pocket that would trounce million dollar supercomputers from the late 80s and early 90s. Already those computers be are so small that we’ll wear them on our bodies and before long the final move will be into our bodies.
So it’s no surprise that a company called Omega Ophthalmics has started clinical trials of a capsule the will fit right into your eye, behind the lens, ready for all sorts of technological magic.
Eye Can See Clearly Now
The device in question is called the Gemini Refractive Capsule and by itself it doesn’t really do all that much. It’s a controlled space where other types of medical intervention can be placed predictably. It started as a better lens-replacement for people with cataracts. Currently they can remove the cloudy natural lens and then replace it with a thin artificial lense that unfurls inside the eye. One of the problems is keeping that lens in place, which the Gemini capsule solves.
As the company developed the capsule, they realised that they had created more than a lens replacement system. The capsule could also serve as a standardized delivery system for other types of implantable technologies, such as a future AR display device.
If the various industries know what the box they have to play with looks like, they can start designing towards that form factor.
In an interview a company representative spoke about the future of AR and their capsule. The capsule creates a standardized entry-point into the eye. Always in the right position and a “biologically inert” zone where anything can be done, as long as it fits.
Scared of Needles?
Personally, the idea of needles or other sharp objects near my eye gives me the creeps, but millions of people have routine eye surgery, which is painless and quick. These days you can have your lens swapped for an artificial one faster than your mechanic can service your car, but then again your mechanic charges per hour!
We’ve hardly stepped into the realm of mainstream AR HMD units, but already the way is paved for much more radical solutions. Even if the idea can make us a little squeamish, you have to admit it’s all very cool.