MIT Media Lab has released its latest low-cost alternative of an eye-testing device made out of plastic which will clip onto a cellphone in order to take advantage of high resolution LCD displays used in handsets these days. All the patient needs to do is stare into the small lens and use the phone’s buttons to adjust the position of sets of parallel green and red lines until they overlap. This ‘test’ will be performed eight times for each eye, where the lines will come together at various angles, and once completed, a pre-installed application on the phone will analyze the results while delivering a prescription within a couple of minutes. Here’s Professor Raskar’s explanation on the nitty gritty of the system.
The prototype system Raskar and his students developed as a result of that insight has an array of tiny lenses and a grid of pinholes that, combined with the software on the phone, “forces the user to focus at different depths” so the eye’s focusing ability can be measured. Essentially, Raskar explains, the test works by transforming any blurriness produced by aberrations in the eye into an array of separate lines or dots instead of a fuzzy blob, which makes it easier for the user to identify the discrepancy clearly.
Makes you want to rush out and purchase the next high resolution display handset just in case this eye-testing device is rolled out in the near future, eh?
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