Product design has always been
sensitive to people’s need to see clearly. But not until recently has technology allowed for such novel improvements on the simple act of seeing. Indeed, if there’s anything technology excels at, it’s inserting a “necessity” where consumers didn’t know there was one, as demonstrated by the eye-opening (no pun intended) new inventions below.
Transcend Ski Goggles:
Only companies located in cities where windy, snowy terrain dictates much of the recreational activity could conceive of an innovation such as this one. Transcend
, a collaboration between Vancouver’s Recon Instruments
and Colorado’s Zeal Optics
, is the world’s first GPS-enabled pair of ski goggles. Unobtrusive built-in displays monitor speed, altitude, distance, location, temperature and more, both frontally and peripherally. By connecting the goggles and computer by USB cord and installing free post-processing software, users can even share and compare their TrueStats
on a social network of sorts
. Snow bunnies eager to hit the slopes wearing the performance-enhancing accessory before the season is over should act fast, as it’s only available in limited quantities
Triggerfish Contact Lenses:
The news of imminent augmented reality in the form of a sixth human sense has already made the rounds
, but it may be closer than anyone expected. Triggerfish contact lenses
, the invention of Swiss scientists at Sensimed
, can already be used to monitor blood sugar levels in people with diabetes and look for signs of glaucoma by recording slight changes in cornea curvature. The lenses are powered by a loop antenna, which users tape to their faces. However, researchers’ hope is that the integration of familiar technology with microelectronics, as demonstrated by Triggerfish, will ultimately allow for the addition of direct in-eye 3D and Sixth Sense Technology
. An iEye may not be too far off.
The good news is that there’s a singular pair of glasses for all visual acuities
, and they’re not bifocals. The bad news is that it might be time to invest in another power strip. Made by Virginia-based lens developer PixelOptics
glasses run on unique battery-powered technology. Similar in concept to the Priva-Lite
glass used in the flagship Prada store’s
dressing rooms, liquid crystal molecules reorient to vary refracted light, just as normal lenses do by varying in thickness. Users need only touch the side of the frames to turn reading power on or off. Scheduled for release this spring, the glasses will retail at an estimated price of $1,200. It seems that luxury eyeglasses no longer require a designer logo.