I cannot imagine living life without having the ability to see the world.It is amazing how we all take for granted the many privileges we have, including our ability to see.Unless you are blind or …
I cannot imagine living life without having the ability to see the world.
It is amazing how we all take for granted the many privileges we have, including our ability to see.
Unless you are blind or have a vision impairment, I bet that you don’t think too much about your eyesight capabilities. I have to admit that I don’t think too much about my eyes until I have to absolutely go to the eye doctor to change my corrective lenses prescription.
Ladies and gentleman, listen carefully to me because what I am going to tell you will make you think about your eyes and the future of your eyesight. We are very close to having access to what is called bionic contacts.
Can you imagine being 87 and having the eyesight of a 20-year-old? I can’t ... yet, but Dr. Garth Webb, in a keynote delivered at the Superhuman Conference, stated that the bionic lens will be an actual lens that will replace your actual eye lens, making wearing glasses or contacts a thing of the past. Period.
What if I told you that with the bionic lens, you will have the eyesight of a hawk. Or, shall we say, you will have eyesight that is three times better than having 20/20 vision.
We are going to have autofocus on steroids and be able to adjust our focus manually inside our eyes. Let me say this again: The bionic lens will allow you and me to adjust the resolution of our eyes as well as the sharpness of what they see!
Why is that so significant? Well, because future technology will now give you the capability to look at a world that was once only possible to see with an electronic microscope. Can you imagine being able to adjust your eyes and having the capacity to see the individual cells of your hand? I have to admit that I cannot imagine that.
According to Dr. Webb, when our eye lens gets old inside of our ocular structure, all of the other components of our eye go bad with it over time, making the case for the bionic eye a no-brainer.
Citizens of Cleveland, Tennessee, we may be closer to science fiction than I thought.
"What does that mean?" you may be asking.
Let me try to explain Dr. Webb’s position on why the bionic lens will change the eye doctor industry forever. He explains that the biochemical assaults that our eyes experience because of the proteins and enzymes that are released by a defective lens end up compromising our ability to see well, along with the ultraviolet light coming from the sun which causes eye degradation coming from the outside.
He also states that the bionic lens will take virtual reality to its completion. There is some speculation that human studies have already started and that the product may be available as early as mid-2018.
Now I like this, I must admit. But, I am skeptical about its potential long-term side effects. My No. 1 skepticism is grounded in the idea that no innovation is 100 percent perfect or 100 percent safe. I don’t know if I want to risk my ability to see in exchange for the possibility of being half robocop!
Having the capability to fine-tune my vision is attractive to me, but I really don’t feel comfortable having to do maintenance on my bionic eye! Let’s not forget that no technology is free of maintenance. I wonder how much this maintenance will cost, and whether insurance companies will pay for it?
We live in a crazy world that is advancing faster than the blink of an eye. The bionic lens may revolutionize how many will experience life as we know it.
As mentioned, I am skeptical about its long-term side effects, but I have to admit that this one will help many along the way.
One thing is certain, the future will be nothing like the past. The technological, invasive phase has started, at least in beta mode.
What the future holds is a mystery that will soon be revealed. We just have to wait and see.
(About the writer: Dr. Luis C. Almeida is an associate professor of communication at Lee University and TEDx speaker. He is the author of the book “Becoming a Brand: The Rise of Technomoderation,” and a devoted Christian. He can be reached via his website at luiscalmeida.info.)
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