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Medicine Technology

Goodbye Bifocals — Electronic Glasses Change Focus 166

kkleiner writes "Move over Ben Franklin, we finally have a replacement for bifocals. Virginia-based Pixel Optics has developed a composite lens that can change the range of focus electronically. The emPower! glasses were created in cooperation with Panasonic Healthcare, and allow you to switch between long distance and short distance vision in a split second. Rather than having a lens divided into two sections, emPower! uses an LCD overlay that can change the focal length of the glasses via electric current. When the LCD layer is off, your lenses are good for intermediate/long distances. Turn the LCD layer on, and a section of the lens is suddenly magnifying close-up images – perfect for reading."
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Goodbye Bifocals — Electronic Glasses Change Focus

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  • How do you switch? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by bradgoodman ( 964302 ) on Wednesday January 12, 2011 @01:50PM (#34850692) Homepage
    How do you switch between the two? With a mechanical switch? Seems to me like that would be more difficult than just adjusting your gaze between the two lenses, like with normal bifocals...
  • Perfect for (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Archangel Michael ( 180766 ) on Wednesday January 12, 2011 @01:51PM (#34850710) Journal

    breaking and expensive replacements.

    Sorry, but I like my analog glasses just fine. I'd hate to have to constantly flip between LCD mode and normal mode. That would drive me nuts more than my graduated glasses are now.

    Not everything is better digitally.

  • by OolimPhon ( 1120895 ) on Wednesday January 12, 2011 @01:59PM (#34850850)

    Idiots. They have no idea how people of bifocals use them, do they?

    I have mine set up so that the line between the separately-focused halves is exactly lined up with the top of my monitor - and the focus of the lower half is arm's length, which is just right for screen work and still acceptable for reading.

    All I have to do is rotate my eyeball up to see perfectly the guy at the facing desk or rotate it downwards to see the code on my screen perfectly, all without moving my head.

    Why on earth would I want to tap my glasses everytime I look up or down?

  • Re:Perfect for (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jayme0227 ( 1558821 ) on Wednesday January 12, 2011 @02:10PM (#34851058) Journal

    This is interesting technology, but just screams "Solution looking for a problem."

  • by bjk002 ( 757977 ) on Wednesday January 12, 2011 @02:14PM (#34851114)

    on this thread, but I would think a bunch of nerds would appreciate the technological triumph, not belabor the deficiencies / hurdles that remain.

    Perhaps the price-point is ridiculous, but as any professionals know the price drops with economies of scale.

    From my perspective, this represents a viable first step toward the elimination of glasses all together. I'm thinking contact lenses with micro generators like this []. OK, maybe not today, but tomorrow?

  • Feeling old (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kabloom ( 755503 ) on Wednesday January 12, 2011 @03:28PM (#34852358) Homepage

    This probably doesn't solve the main problem of bifocals, which is that people who need to wear them for the first time will still feel old. Graded lenses without the line that's visible to other people didn't solve that problem, and technologically cool LCD glasses won't either.

If it's not in the computer, it doesn't exist.