The Terminator’s Vision
It has been the stuff of science fiction for decades, but the U.S. military announced it is close to developing a virtual reality contact lens to enhance soldier’ vision on the battlefield.
The Terminator-style vision — a project of DARPA working with Washington-based company Innovega, would enable soldiers to simultaneously focus on the battlefield and mission data, such as live video from an overhead drone, at the same time.
The problem for Innovega designers was that a ‘natural’ human eye cannot focus on objects at very close distances, neither can it focus on both clse-up, projected image and distance-vision at the same time, forcing the user to switch between the two.
However Innovega claims to have solved this issue with the iOptik lens that allows the wearer to focus on far-away objects and images projected on the wearable glasses at the same time.
Video feeds, mission data or the location of comrades appear to be overlaid, or augmented, on top of a wearer’s normal view of the real world.
The new lens could also be used to provide soldiers with magnified vision and other enhancements like “The system would enable the soldier to remotely pilot drones and robots, allowing their eyes to ‘be’ where the robot is,” says CEO Steve Willey.
Right where did we hear this before? That’s right with DARPA’s other pet project; Project Avatar.
The military will get their fieldable prototype by 2013, and Innovega is promising a commercial version by 2014.
It all sounds pretty cool, and it is if it were not such a worrisome sign of a transhumanist society. Especially if such society is so rapidly materializing while so many are not aware.